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Lack of consensus delays ICC revamp

Six hours of heated discussion in the Gulf puts future of cricket in a spin

Dubai: The International Cricket Council’s (ICC) Board has come out in support of the proposals which will give financial and administrative control of the world cricket body to India, England and Australia. However, a consensus on the proposed radical changes is yet to be made as some members are opposed to the power-sharing idea between the ‘the big three’ countries.

ICC president Alan Isaac
ICC president Alan Isaac 

An ICC statement issued yesterday claimed that the Board has “unanimously supported” the future structure of the sport’s governing body and was confident of a consensus at a “follow-up Board meeting next month.”

“This is an important time for world cricket and it is extremely encouraging that the ICC Board has unanimously supported a set of far-reaching principles that will underpin the long-term prosperity of the global game,” said ICC president Alan Isaac after the long ICC Board meeting here.

However, ESPN Cricinfo reported that Bangladesh Cricket Board (BCB) opposed the draft proposals. BCB’s acting CEO Nizamuddin Chowdhary said in a press release: “We have communicated to the ICC Board that the BCB will not endorse any proposal that compromises Bangladesh’s full member rights in terms of status and participation.”

Meanwhile, Isaac added: “There is more work to be done by the members in developing their schedules of bilateral cricket while at the ICC we need to work through the detail of the manner in which these principles will be implemented. Extensive work will now be undertaken in advance of a follow-up Board meeting next month.”

The leaked draft paper created a controversy in the lead up to Tuesday’s meeting with Pakistan, Bangladesh, Sri Lanka and South Africa opposing the planned overhaul of the ICC.

The officials of these four countries told ESPN Cricinfo the matter had not gone to vote and they needed time to study the proposal. The website reported that Bangladesh has already written to the ICC, opposing the changes.

According to the ICC statement, the Board supported a host of “principles” in the meeting. It said that a BCCI official will chair the ICC board from 2014 for a period of two years while a representative from Cricket Australia and England and Wales Cricket Board (ECB) will chair the executive committee and financial and commercial affairs committee respectively.

It was also agreed that three ICC events will take place in the four-year cycle and the Champions Trophy will replace the proposed World Test Championship. The ICC said that a Test Cricket Fund will be introduced for the Full Members (except BCCI, CA and ECB) to encourage and support the longest format.

It further said, “there will be an opportunity for all members to play all formats of cricket on merit, with participation based on meritocracy; no immunity to any country, and no change to membership status.”
The heated meeting reportedly lasted more than six hours.

Before attending the meeting Pakistan Cricket Board chairman Zaka Ashraf told a Pakistani TV channel: “Bangladesh, Pakistan, South Africa and Sri Lanka… we all have one stance. Let us see what we vote inside. We will stick to our stance.”

Who’s who in the ICC board...

> Alan Isaac (ICC president)
> Mustafa Kamal (VP)
> David Richardson (chief executive)
> Zaka Ashraf (PCB chairman)
> Dave Cameron (WICB president)
> Peter Chingoka (Zimbabwe Cricket chairman)
> Giles Clarke (ECB chairman)
> Jayantha Dharmadasa (Sri Lanka Cricket president)
> Wally Edwards (CA chief)
> Nazmul Hassan (Bangladesh Cricket Board president)
> N Srinivasan (BCCI chief)
> Martin Snedden (New Zealand Cricket director)
> Chris Nenzani (Cricket South Africa President)
> Imran Khwaja (Associate member representative, rep. Singapore)
> Keith Oliver (Associate member representative, rep. Scotland)
Neil Speight (Associate member representative, rep. Bermuda)

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