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Rain could ruin India-Aus Kochi ODI

October 15, 2010 17:14 IST

Heavy rain in Kochi since Thursday night has raised concerns about the fate of the first One-Day International between India and Australia on Sunday, October 17.

Friday's practice sessions of both the teams were cancelled because of the unrelenting downpour.

The Australian team was to practice in the morning and the Indian team in the afternoon, but both sessions were cancelled.

The ground condition is very bad; there is lot of water on the ground, said an official of the Kerala Cricket Association, which is hosting the match.

"However, if the rain clears by this afternoon and there is sunshine, we will try our best to clear the water," he added.

Though the ground is covered with plastic sheets, brought from Chennai, there is seepage into the ground.

The two teams reached Kochi on Thursday after the second Test in Bangalore, which India won.

India also won the first Test at Mohali.

The Met department has forecast cloudy weather for Saturday, with one or two showers. However, the forecast for Sunday is encouraging.

"Three super soppers are being put to use in the ground -- which has never been done before. Hundreds of workers are mopping the ground which will be ready for the match," said Kerala Cricket Association secretary T C Mathew.

"Our agenda is to first clear 30 yards of the playing area after which the outfield beyond 30 yards would be taken up for drying," he said, adding plastic covers have been spread completely over the playing area.

In 2007 too there was a similar situation and speculation that the match would not be held, he said.

The two team managements would be informed about the ground conditions on Friday evening after which a decision would be taken about the practise sessions, he said.

Asked if ticket sales are hit due to senior players of both teams dropping out of the ODI squad, Mathew said they are encouraging.

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