BCCI, be firm, but fair
To be fair to the Board of Control for Cricket in India, it needs to be given more credit for putting the Indian Premier League on the road.To be fair to the Board of Control for Cricket in India, it needs to be given more credit for putting the Indian Premier League on the road. However much the rest of the cricketing world loves to ridicule the Twenty20 event, the fact remains that it is a great business-cum-entertainment product that can make the most prosperous of sporting bodies envious.
However, there has been a lot of turbulence... Lalit Modi's removal as IPL commissioner in 2010, the Kochi affair and now Sahara saying they don't want to handle the Pune franchise team. Sahara point out to past instances where they have taken the rough with the smooth, reportedly with the interests of cricket in mind. While that may well be true, it does not give them the right to expect favours when it comes to a different tournament, though run by the same BCCI. After all, the IPL also involves other corporate houses.
If Sahara felt they have been hard done by while other IPL teams have benefited on several issues, then they should have been pointed out there and then. And they had every right to raise the red flag. Mixing up IPL grievances with Team India's sponsorship does not sound right.
BCCI on their part should ensure the men who govern their tournament do so in an absolutely fair way. It would have helped if the BCCI came out in the open about Sahara's request (for a purse to buy a player at Saturday's auction in the wake of Yuvraj Singh's serious illness) and state why this would be unfair to other teams before Sahara went to the press.
On the whole, India's cricketing credibility has plummeted several notches. The BCCI should deal with the Sahara issue firmly but fairly. And all compromises don't have to be unholy.