Hotel fire forces postponement of Vijay Hazare Trophy semi-final

MS Dhoni and the rest of the Jharkhand team were evacuated from the team hotel © PTI

A fire accident at Jharkhand’s team hotel in New Delhi’s Dwarka area on Friday morning has resulted in postponement of the second semi-final of the Vijay Hazare Trophy. The match between Jharkhand and Bengal will now be played on Saturday at Feroz Shah Kotla.

“We were to assemble in the lobby at 7.30am as we usually do before a game, but at 7, I was asked to stay back in the room by Pratyush Singh as there was lot of fire and smoke at the ground floor lobby,” Ishank Jaggi, the Jharkhand batsman, told ESPNcricinfo. “It spread quite quickly and when we finally got out of our seventh floor rooms, all we could see around us was smoke. It was so thick that we couldn’t even see the far end of the lobby.

“What added to our concern was the fire alarm didn’t go off, so we assumed it to be a small fire accident. But when there was a strong burning smell, we were asked to vacate immediately. The seriousness of it struck us only when we got out. The smoke spread to our rooms as well. That is when we were asked to run down the stairs.”

MS Dhoni, the captain, along with the rest of the players and support staff were evacuated from the hotel and driven to the Palam grounds, where they are currently housed. While there hasn’t been any official confirmation from the hotel, it is likely that it could take “three-four hours at least,” according to Jaggi for them to return to their rooms.

The final of the Vijay Hazare Trophy at the Feroz Shah Kotla was subsequently postponed to Monday.

© ESPN Sports Media Ltd.

Source: ESPN Crickinfo

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