Warne shocked by IPL expulsion

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The Independent Online

Rajasthan Royals skipper Shane Warne has expressed shock at the Board of Control for Cricket in India's decision to eject his team and the Kings XI Punjab from the next edition of the Indian Premier League.

The BCCI yesterday announced the Royals and Kings XI franchises would not take part in IPL 4 after being judged to have breached rules on franchise ownership.

Warne, who led the Royals towards IPL glory in the inaugural tournament in 2008, admitted the news was yet to completely sink in.

"Just woke up to news that Royals and Kings out of IPL 4, don't know anything yet," the Australian wrote on his Twitter feed.

"It's a big shock for Royals, will hopefully get to the bottom of it all."

BCCI reasoning behind the ejections remains unclear, but Warne felt the ban would affect young cricketers the most.

He added: "What now for the youngsters? The Royals gave young unknown Indian players a chance. I as captain backed them, and our coaching staff supported them. We were a team.

"Three seasons ago Royals won the first ever IPL, underdogs come good, what a story, it helped give credibility to the competition. Now look.

"I hope the BCCI come to their senses, fingers crossed."

Actress-turned-businesswoman Shilpa Shetty, who owns a stake in the Royals posted: "Honestly too shocked to react, just disheartened. It's more than just a team for us! Still haven't received the termination, will react after [that]. Need to know the basis of this decision."

Business tycoon Vijay Mallya, owner of the Royal Challengers Bangalore, hit out at the sport's national governing body.

"This is downright ridiculous and raises serious questions on the attitude of the BCCI towards IPL franchisees," Mallya posted.

"I wonder if IPL franchisees are serious stakeholders whose investments in participation are respected or are they slaves who only come and play."