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BCCI opposes naming rights plan for Eden Gardens

Plans to rename the iconic Eden Gardens cricket ground in Kolkata, India have been placed in doubt after the Board of Control for Cricket in India opposed the proposals.

The Cricket Association of Bengal wants to press ahead with a naming rights sponsorship deal for the venue and earlier this week its board members agreed to sell naming rights to the highest bidder.

The 66,000-capacity stadium is home to the Bengal cricket team and Indian Premier League franchise the Kolkata Knight Riders, and is also a leading venue of international cricket.

The CAB, whose new president is former Indian cricket captain Sourav Ganguly, feels a rebrand would provide the board with a significant financial boost.

However the BCCI has confirmed that it has not been made privy to the plans. The national governing body also added that any proposals would require a lengthy discussion before being given the go ahead.

“No communication has been made with me in this regard,” BCCI president Shashank Manohar told the Indian Express newspaper. “The BCCI rules are clear; no stadium should be named after a company, because for the ICC (or other) events, there could be a conflict between the interest of sponsors.

“We have to take this into account before allocating matches. The issue would have to be discussed threadbare with the BCCI before we take a decision.”

The BCCI is not the only obstacle facing the CAB. The body would also require permission from the Indian army.

“Eden Gardens is not the CAB’s property,” a CAB spokesman told the Indian Express. “The state association has a lease agreement with the army and needs permission from them to sell the naming rights. I don’t think the army has been approached yet.”