New Delhi: The race for the top post of the Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) saw a new twist on Sunday with former president Shashank Manohar emerging as the new candidate to succeed Jagmohan Dalmiya.
Manohar, who headed the BCCI from 2008 to 2011, is known to be close to former BCCI and International Cricket Council (ICC) chief Sharad Pawar.
With Dalmiya's demise leaving the BCCI president's post vacant midway through the term, Manohar has reportedly emerged as a consensus candidate among East Zone units whose turn it is to nominate a president till 2017. Any canditate for the BCCI top job will need a proposer from the eastern region and Tripura Cricket Association or National Cricket Club is likely to propose Manohar's candidature.
The senior lawyer has Pawar's backing and with Indian Premier League (IPL) chief Rajiv Shukla opting out of the race, he is likely to be supported by BCCI secretary Anurag Thakur as well.
To become BCCI president, a candidate needs at least four of the six votes from East Zone and Manohar, therefore, is the best possible consensus candidate under the circumstances.
Jharkhand Cricket Association (JCA) chief Amitabh Choudhary had emerged as a possible candidate earlier in he week, but his chances seem bleak as the Sharad Pawar and Anurag Thakur factions want their man to suceed Dalmiya.
Manohar's emergence means that the faction led by former BCCI chief N. Srinivasan will find itself out in the cold.
"Manohar has always maintained that he has played his innings as BCCI top boss. He does not wish to come back again but is ready to help the BCCI restore its faith among stakeholders. He has made it clear that he is not at all in favour of a Pawar-Srinivasan alliance," a BCCI official was quoted as saying by NDTV.
As per the BCCI constitution, a notification for a Special General Meeting (SGM) to nominate a successor has to be issued within 15 days of Dalmiya's death. The BCCI is likely to announce the SGM by October 5.