‘We’ve done nothing wrong, we’re with..’: Azharuddin on the rise for Ind vs Aus T20I ticket sales in Hyderabad

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Thousands of people thronged the Gymkhana Ground in Hyderabad to get tickets for the T20I between India and Australia on Sunday at the Rajiv Gandhi International Stadium, triggering a stampede and lathi attack.

On Thursday, chaotic scenes arose as ticket sales began. Mohammad Azharuddin, the head of the Hyderabad Cricket Association (HCA), and other top officials were asked for explanations by Telangana’s Sports Minister, V. Srinivas Goud.

About 20 people were injured, seven of whom were rushed for immediate medical attention.

Police resorted to a mild lathi attack to disperse the crowd, while the injured, including a woman gasping for breath, were taken to a nearby hospital in a police vehicle. Among the injured who were hospitalized were a firefighter and a police officer.

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“Running a match is not as easy as sitting in this room and talking about it,” ex-Indian captain Azharuddin told reporters.

In his comments at a press conference, Azharuddin promised to report on ticket sales. Telangana’s Sports Minister was also present.

“We have not broken any laws. We are standing next to the injured fans and the HCA will take excellent care of them. The Minister will receive a thorough report from me on ticket sales, availability and other facts, and he will tell you what is good and what wrong, he said.

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“There will be problems. Yes, the public wants to see the game after a three-year hiatus. But again, they can’t do it all. We will provide all the details at the media briefing on Friday. We have nothing to hide. But at the same time, we need to make sure the game continues,” added the HCA chief.

The sports minister blamed the chaos on the “lack of coordination between the state government and HCA”.

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“I assure you that the incidents will not happen again,” Gold said. “Top police officers will investigate the reasons leading to today’s incidents and will take appropriate action if necessary. We had decided late last night to sell tickets offline and as a result there was a huge turnout, leading to the stampede.”

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