The poor air quality may bring fewer games for Feroz Shah Kotla. In fact, the Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) is hoping that the board's rotation policy about allocating international matches to venues would make sure Delhi doesn't get another Test match at least till 2020.
"BCCI is pitching for their exclusive home season slot in February-March every year. They will only get that slot in February-March 2020 as per the new Future Tours Programme (FTP). Therefore, Kotla may or may not be in line for a Test match before 2020," a senior BCCI official told PTI.
Sri Lankan players had complained about the breathing problems. Most of them even came out on the field wearing masks in the 3rd Test against India.
"As per the rotation policy, Kotla has now got its Test match and in November it got an ODI. Their turn will not come next year as India will perhaps have at the most one full-fledged series. There are other venues waiting for their turn. Similarly in 2019, when the fresh Future Tours and Programme (FTP) starts, it will take some time for Kotla to get another game," the official said.
Umpires had to stop the second day's play between India and Sri Lanka for some 25 minutes after the visitors were uncomfortable with the poor air. It later forced the Indian captain Virat Kohli to declare the innings at 536/7.
Recently, Indian pacer Mohammad Shami had given a statement in which he said they didn't feel much discomfort as they are used to of the pollution. He also said what Sri Lankans portrayed wearing masks was overhyped.
Kotla had its share of matches for the time being. The BCCI acting secretary Amitabh Chaudhary, during a media conference on Monday, admitted that scheduling Test matches in New Delhi during this time of the year will come up for discussion.
"Now what will be the environmental condition in 2020 can't be predicted in 2017. So if Kotla doesn't get a match, it will be purely because of rotation," the official said.
(With PTI inputs)