Bangladesh not to allow Pawar-Whatmore meeting
May 17, 2007 - 7:32:21 PM

Chittagong, May 17 - The Bangladesh Cricket Board - said Thursday that it would not allow its coach Dave Whatmore to speak with the Indian cricket board officials during the first Test starting here Friday.

Whatmore has been in talks with the Board of Control for Cricket in India - as a possible replacement for national coach Greg Chappell, who left India after the World Cup following completion of his two-year tenure.

A six-member BCCI team, led by its president Sharad Pawar, is coming here Saturday, apparently to speak to Whatmore, whose four-year terms ends with the current Test series May 29, on his possible shift to India.

'I don't know what exactly is happening with BCCI and Whatmore. But if he wants to talk with them during a Test match, we will not allow him to do it. He is under contract with us,' said BCB president Mohammad Abdul Aziz Thursday.

Whatmore, who guided Sri Lanka to the 1996 World Cup title and Bangladesh to the Super 8 stage of the last World Cup in the West Indies, has shown interest in taking over the reins of the Indian team, though he has also been in talks with the Pakistan Cricket Board.

Whatmore's possible meeting with Pawar has suddenly become an issue in this country, with the BCB taking a tough stand on the coach's likely shift to India.

'We respect Whatmore for his contribution to Bangladesh cricket. We believe he will not hold any talk with BCCI on ethical grounds,' said BCB general-secretary Mahbub Anam.

'If he becomes involved with the process, we will probably see a new dimension of his nature,' he said, trying to put across the BCB point rather diplomatically.

Indian team's cricket manager Ravi Shastri, who is also in the BCCI panel formed to pick the new coach, has already spoken to Whatmore here and the Sri Lankan-born former Australian Test player is said to have shown his interest in the high-profile but tough Indian job.

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