Old images of a hair dryer and an electric iron being used to dry a cricket pitch are being shared to claim that they were used during the IPL 2023 final played between Chennai Super Kings and Gujarat Titans which was interrupted by a heavy downpour.
BOOM found that the claims are misleading, and the images are from a T20 match between India and Sri Lanka on January 5, 2020.
The match between CSK and GT on May 29 was interrupted in the second innings after a sudden downpour halted play. After the rain subsided, the ground staff at the Narendra Modi Stadium in Ahmedabad was seen using sponges to soak the water from the practice pitch. The old images of the hair dryer and electric iron being used on a pitch have been circulating in this backdrop.
Republic World published an article on May 29 using the old hair dryer image.
The images are also viral on Twitter. One page shared them with the caption, "BCCI have lots of Fund But this is shameless no proper equipment. For IPL the BCCI have no idea what's the value of IPL 😌"
The post is also circulating on Facebook.
BOOM found that the photos of the hair dryer and electric iron are not from the CSK vs GT match, but from a 2020 match played between India and Sri Lanka in Guwahati.
A reverse image search of the image with the hair dryer led us to several reports published in January 2020. One report by The Indian Express from January 5 was titled 'Hairdryer, steam iron brought out to dry Guwahati pitch before T20I against Sri Lanka'
Click here to view.
The story mentioned how hair dryers and electric irons were used to dry the pitch at the Barsapara Cricket Stadium in Guwahati, but after all attempts failed, the T20 match between India and Sri Lanka was finally called off.
A similar story by The Quint published on January 6 carried the same photo from our viral claim.
Click here to view.
A story by Outlook published on January 6 carried a photo of the hair dryer as well as the electric iron.
Click here to read.
As for the CSK vs GT match, a report by Inside Sport published on May 30, 2023, mentioned how in addition to the sponges, the ground staff was also seen "what looked like a mixture of saw dust and green sand" on the pitch. "They proceeded to roll over the surface and used the super sopper to speed up the process," the report added. According to The Indian Express, a hair dryer was used to dry the pitch as well.
Despite all this, a substantial amount of time was wasted and the match was reduced to 15 overs. CSK ended up scoring 171 runs and winning the match, bagging their 5th IPL title.
It is noteworthy that during the inauguration of the Narendra Modi Stadium in February 2021, its state of the art drainage system was touted by many, including an All India Radio News tweet from that time that informed about the sub-soil drainage system which enabled the water to be drained off within "30 minutes from the time it stops raining, avoiding cancellation of matches due to wet ground."
However, as per this Indian Express live blog, it stopped raining at around 10:10 pm, yet the match resumed only two hours later at 12:11 am due to the wet practice pitch.
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