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Pawar meets Thackeray over Aus players inclusion in IPL

Last updated on: February 07, 2010 21:50 IST

NCP president and Union Agriculture minister Sharad Pawar met Shiv Sena supremo Bal Thackeray at the latter's residence on Sunday night.

The meeting at Matoshree, apparently to discuss the Sena's opposition to inclusion of Pakistan and Australia players in the third edition of the Indian Premier League, has created ripples in the state political circles, as both NCP and Sena are in an uneasy partnership with their respective allies - Congress and BJP.

Pawar was accompanied by Board of Control for Cricket in India president Shashank Manohar.

While Pawar has come under flak from Congress leaders over price rise, Sena is vociferously opposed to a separate Vidarbha state, the demand backed by its ally BJP.

It may be too early to term the meeting between the two leaders as the beginning of a possible political realignment in the state, but it is sure to upset their allies.

About 20 Australians, including Shane Warne, Matthew Hayden, Mike Hussey and Brett Lee, will be playing in the upcoming IPL. The Australian Cricket Players' Association had voiced security concerns of their players playing in Mumbai in light of the Sena's threat to oppose Australian players' participation because of attacks on Indians Down Under.

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