Australian cricket impresario Kerry Packar has said a 'group of crusty old men sitting behind closed doors' made the decision to bar his Supertest Match from Sydney Cricket Ground.
CU Australian cricket impresario Kerry Packer being interviewed with reporter peter Meakin asking questions & Packer replying.
TRANSCRIPT: SEQ. 1: MEAKIN: "Mr Packer, today another obstacle, the SCG isn't available. Why all these obstacles?"
PACKER: "Well, I wish I knew the answer...it's not a complete surprise, you know, that the SCG isn't available, we always did have another ground in reserve. I would have thought that it was in the interests of the SCG to hire the ground out so that revenue's coming in so that they could continue to improve it. They didn't see it that way."
MEAKIN: "Are these dates for the Supertests virtually a declaration of war?"
PACKER: "No... I mean, a long time ago we said we were going to put on the Supertests; now obviously they were going to be in the summertime here when cricket is traditionally played. When else would anyone have expected them to be on?"
MEAKIN: "But the dates of the Supertests coincide with the dates of the official Test."
PACKER: "Well, yes, but they don't coincide in the same cities. I mean when you're in Melbourne you're unlikely to go to a Supertest which is in Sydney; or if there was one which was in Sydney if you lived in Melbourne you're unlikely to go to that one. I mean obviously as best as they can they'll be worked out not to clash, in the same cities."
MEAKIN: "It does mean that the players you've signed wouldn't be available to play in the official Test."
PACKER: "Everyone's being telling me for months and months that they're going to get barred. That can't be a surprise to anyone, surely."
MEAKIN: "What those fixtures mean is that Australia will virtually be fielding a Second eleven against the Indians."
PACKER: "No...about a Third eleven. After all we've got 20 players signed up so that's about the bulk of the Second eleven, isn't it?"
MEAKIN: "You sound increasingly likely to run out of patience with the cricket authorities..."
PACKER: "It's not a matter of running out of patience with the cricket authorities. I had tried to do everything within my power to reach an agreement with them. They told me to go away. Now...I've gone away, I'm doing my thing and they're doing their's. It's not a matter of animosity or being at war or anything else; it's just purely and simply a matter of everyone's got to get on and do their own thing, and the public can choose what they want to watch. I would have thought the public were with us."
REPORTER: PETER MEAKIN
Script is copyright Reuters Limited. All rights reserved
Background: Australian cricket impresario Kerry Packar has said a 'group of crusty old men sitting behind closed doors' made the decision to bar his Supertest Match from Sydney Cricket Ground. Mr Packer also claimed that without the twenty players he's signed up for his "Circus,' Australia would be left with a third eleven to play against India in the south coming official Test matches. He spoke to reporter Peter Meakin of channel nine in Sydney.