Sri Lanka does a U-turn; offers unanimous support to controversial ICC revamp, a move predicted by 1996 World Cup-winning skipper Arjuna Ranatunga in a recent interview to MiD DAY
Colombo: Sri Lanka Cricket (SLC) yesterday decided to unanimously support the controversial the International Cricket Council (ICC) restructure plan. In the new shake-up of its governance and structure, much of the power rests with India, Australia and England as they contribute most to the ICC coffers.
SLC secretary Nishantha Ranatunga and Arjuna Ranatunga
SLC had earlier opposed the 'Big Three' plan to revamp the ICC. Sri Lanka and Pakistan were the only countries not in favour of the ICC restructure after South Africa recently pledged their support as well.
Sri Lanka decided to abstain from voting on the move during an ICC Board Meeting on February 8, along with Pakistan, after South Africa switched to vote in favour.
However, yesterday SLC decided to unanimously support the new draft which was passed in the ICC Board meeting earlier this month. In an interview to MiD DAY on Saturday, former Sri Lankan skipper Arjuna Ranatunga had anticipated SLC's change of heart.
"I am not confident that Sri Lanka will not bow down to pressure ultimately. Now, it's the age of give and take. Cricket has already taken the backseat," SL's 1996 World Cup-winning skipper had said.
Ranatunga also suspected that the islanders were not bought at the Indian Premier League recent auction because Sri Lanka did not support the plan for India, Australia and England to run world cricket.
SLC, after its Executive Committee meeting yesterday, said in a statement that it was satisfied with the revised resolutions tabled at the ICC Board Meeting.
"The Executive Committee met today (February 17) at SLC headquarters to converse regarding the revised resolutions forwarded by the ICC at the ICC Board meeting held on 8th February 2014 in Singapore."
Subsequent to the committee members assessing the revised resolutions in detail, all members were satisfied with the amendments made in the areas of governance and competition models and thus unanimously decided to support the paper.
Favourable for SLC
"Further the Executive Committee proposed the relevant officials engage in discussions with other member nations to negotiate bi-lateral tours in the FTP (Future Tour Programme) which are in a favourable manner to SLC," SLC Secretary Nishantha Ranatunga, who is the younger brother of Arjuna, said that supporting the 'Big Three' would benefit Sri Lankan cricket.
SLC secretary said they would earn revenue of around "USD 47-48 million" through series with the three countries in the next seven years.
"When you calculate, a series with these three countries will bring us a revenue of USD 47-48m. People who talk about principles will not give us the money. We have to make our money from these tours so that our cricket don't suffer," Nishantha said.