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Oz Cricketers Are Free To Quit India On Terror Fear: CA

Chandigarh: The Jama Masjid shootout may have created a scare among the visiting Ricky Ponting-led Australian cricketers. Australian cricketers have been told that any one of them is free leave the tour of India if
PTI September 24, 2010 9:43 IST
PTI
Chandigarh: The Jama Masjid shootout may have created a scare among the visiting Ricky Ponting-led Australian cricketers.

Australian cricketers have been told that any one of them is free leave the tour of India if they have security-related fears.

Cricket Australia spokesman Peter Young confirmed this, and added that there will be no repercussions in the selection room for any player wanting to return home early.

Also, security threats to the Commonwealth Games have left an uneasy feeling around the two-Test tour.

The Australians'' hotel at Chandigarh resembled a fort, with armed officers crowding the foyer, entrances and corridors.

Australia''s Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade has advised tourists against travelling to India, and the players know they can receive leave passes without their chances of Ashes selection being compromised.

"If a player becomes that concerned, we would respect their wishes and their right not to continue travelling with the team, " Young said.

Australia''s team manager Steve Bernard confirmed the stance, adding: "Let's hope it doesn't come to that. "

The Herald Sun said that about 50-armed officers have been outside the hotel, and at least as many inside, including at every elevator in the building.