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September 11, 2002 | 1745 IST

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Indians barred from wearing Sahara logo

Giving rise to fresh controversy, the International Cricket Council has barred Indian players from wearing the logo of team-sponsors Sahara Group in the Champions Trophy, which begins in Colombo on Thursday.

The ICC shot off a letter to the Board of Control for Cricket in India on Tuesday night, contending that letting the Indian players wear the Sahara logo would compromise the commercial interest of tournament sponsors South African Airways, as the Indian company too is in the airline business.

Though BCCI president Jagmohan Dalmiya refused to comment on the fresh development, board sources said that ICC's letter took them by surprise.

The sources said that BCCI last month gave the ICC a list of other businesses of the Sahara Group during the world cricket body's executive board meeting in Dubai to convince it that the airline is not the sole business of the group.

The latest ICC missive, however, rejected the BCCI's contention and directed that Indian players would not be allowed to use the Sahara logo during the tournament.

India play their Champions Trophy lung-opener against Zimbabwe at the Premadasa stadium in Colombo on September 14.

It is understood that the BCCI is now engaged in hectic parleys with Sahara to resolve the latest crisis.

Complete Coverage: The ICC Contract Row

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