J&K pulls out of Vizzy Trophy due to communication difficulties

Owing to the communication restrictions in the Valley imposed by the Indian government, the JKCA failed to get in touch with most of its players for the tourney.

Security personnel stand guard at a check point in Srinagar.   -  PTI

The Jammu and Kashmir Cricket Association (JKCA) has decided to pull out of the Vizzy Trophy after it failed to connect with the players due to a communication clampdown in the valley.

Ever since the Indian government decided to abrogate Article 370, which granted special status to the State of Jammu and Kashmir (J&K), there has been a curfew in the valley. Consequentially, the State cricket association failed to connect with most of its players for the Vizzy Trophy, which begins in Visakhapatnam from August 22.

As first reported by Sportstar on Thursday, the JKCA’s administrator, Justice (retd) C. K. Prasad had written to J&K governor Satya Pal Malik requesting him to help the association in sending the cricketers to Visakhapatnam. But on Sunday, Justice Prasad confirmed to this publication that the association hasn’t received any reply from the governor’s office.

“Even though the landline phone service has partly been restored, the mobile networks are still not operational. In such a scenario, we are unable to get in touch with most of the players who live in villages. We tried our best to organise everything, but things did not work out,” JKCA’s CEO Ashiq Ali Bukhari said from Srinagar on Sunday.

The J&K team was supposed to leave for Visakhapatnam on Tuesday, but it has now informed the tournament organisers about its unavailability.

'Setback'

The team was training in Srinagar before the government imposed a curfew in the valley, and the team’s mentor and erstwhile India cricketer, Irfan Pathan, admitted that the players were well-prepared for the pre-season tournament.

“The team not being able to play in the Vizzy Trophy is definitely a setback. But nothing much can be done about it. I hope things will improve soon and we can look forward to the domestic season,” Pathan said.