Paul Ford January 6, 2009

Stopped making sense

All this goes to show that “overlooking” players who dare to try and earn some mortgage money in an Indian domestic cricket is a complete and utter nonsense
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It remains unfathomable, preposterous and ridiculous that Shane Bond is not considered for the New Zealand team, yet is being watched and no doubt admired by selectors as he tours the country wreaking a little havoc here and there for his domestic team, Canterbury. In recent weeks he has played at obscure venues such as Mainpower Oval in Rangiora and Fitzherbert Park in Palmerston North, thundering in before “crowds” comprising just a few hundred fans.

It is utter nonsense.

This week Bond was at the 1974 Commonwealth Games venue, QEII Park, on the outskirts of his home town of Christchurch. He delivered a genuinely hostile spell of fast bowling (10 overs, 3 maidens, 1 for 24) to the Wellington top order and impressed his domestic coach Bob Carter who told The Press: “I think when he bowls like that and with that pace, our attack becomes that much more potent. I think they were 94 for eight at one stage and a lot of that could be put down to the pressure…in the first 10 overs." NZ coach Andy Moles was behind the rope watching, along with selection panel convenor Glenn Turner.

The landscape of international cricket has been transformed with the rise of Indian domestic leagues, and New Zealand has paid a hefty price. The Indian money men have reaped a rich harvest from the relatively low-paid meadow of New Zealand cricket. Along with Bond, Stephen Fleming, Craig McMillan, Nathan Astle, Hamish Marshall, Andre Adams, Chris Harris, Chris Cairns, Lou Vincent and Darryl Tuffey all had the pin pulled on their international careers and headed off to play on the sub-continent.

Fleming is the only one of the 10 to have joined the establishment-endorsed IPL, where he plays alongside several current international players. These include Scott Styris whose withdrawal from Test cricket also coincided with the emergence of the Indian domestic league, robbing the NZ Test team of yet another experienced middle-order batsman.

Initially there was much gnashing of teeth about the prospect of the domestic associations daring to select ICL players. The BCCI was reportedly “seething in anger” when Darryl Tuffey was selected to play for Auckland against Bangladesh in a warm-up game last season, given that NZC was part of the “gentlemen’s agreement” to encourage the non-selection of any player involved in an “unauthorised tournament”.

The official position in NZ is that ICL players can play in domestic cricket as non-contracted players (earning NZ$1425 for a first-class match, NZ$710 for a 50-over match, and NZ$450 for a Twenty20) but will not be eligible for selection for any national representative teams. In other countries the players are variously banned, overlooked or embraced depending which way the wind is blowing (and which way the BCCI is looking).

The irony is that “outlaws” like Bond, Marshall, Tuffey and Harris continue to do their bit on the home front by playing on the New Zealand domestic cricket circuit - showing their wares, testing their skills, and sharing their experience and nous – but IPL player Stephen Fleming is nowhere to be seen.

The second irony is that although any cricketers who dare take part in unsanctioned tournaments will be sidelined from involvement in national teams, that doesn’t apply to the selectors themselves. Selector Dion Nash and recently appointed “domestic cricket selection panel adviser” Mark Greatbatch won’t be out walking the dog like Andrew Hilditch, but they will be on the Gold Coast of Australia playing in the 2009 XXXX Gold Beach Cricket tournament from January 10-25 alongside Sky commentator Martin Crowe (captain), Danny Morrison, Fleming and ICL players Astle, Harris and McMillan.

The beach cricket is unofficial – and the naming rights sponsor is a competitor to the official beer sponsor of Cricket Australia. Similarly, the NZ beach cricket team is sponsored by Speight’s, a NZ beer and stablemate of the Australian XXXX brand that is also a direct competitor of NZC’s beer sponsor Export Gold.

NZC CEO Justin Vaughan told the Dominion Post: “Players go off to the IPL and we've accommodated that and selectors sometimes have the odd commitment. It's only for two weeks so I'm comfortable with it.”

Like the ICL, the beach cricket is a non-establishment tournament, but the crucial difference is that the BCCI don’t care about it so there are no arbitrary ramifications for those who participate.

All this goes to show that “overlooking” players who dare to try and earn some mortgage money in an Indian domestic cricket is a complete and utter nonsense. It is depriving New Zealand of the ability to select from its very limited pool of quality players and the world game is weaker for it. The sooner common-sense is applied to resolve this issue the better.

Paul Ford is a co-founder of the Beige Brigade. He tweets here

Comments have now been closed for this article

  • Sunil on January 14, 2009, 0:36 GMT

    I am wondering why no individual who is a professional Cricketer, challenging BCCI in court. If my profession is to play Cricket, BCCI cannot tell me whom I can or cannot work for unless they are guaranteeing employment and income - and that applies to every cricketer, Indian or non-indian, who is playing in ICL. No one can force ICL and IPL to join and in fact by not joining, they are providing double the employment opportunitites for professional cricketers.

    An employer cannot enforce a non-compete for people that it does not employ. I think this is a very basic and natural principle that is being violated - discrimination and being stopped frm earning a livelihood.

    Can someone with legal experience throw some light?

  • Paul on January 13, 2009, 23:56 GMT

    At least NZ cricket let Bond play. Jason Gillespie was ruled out from taking up a coaching role with Cricket Australia purely because of his ICL links.

    It's madness. So much talent being lost to the game.

  • Steve B on January 13, 2009, 6:07 GMT

    Fantastic commentary / debate. A country with a population and player pool as small as NZ cannot ever afford to have anything better than its best 11 on the park. NZC needs to take fair portion of the blame here. With such a small population and the mass appeal of Rugby, cricket will always be the poor relation. No one can blame Bond & Co. for taking the ICL riches given their ages and the differential between that offer and what they could earn from remaining "on the tour" from NZC.

    It is no surprise that so many have opted to join the ICL.

    Until the IPL/ICL are joined it will always be a problem for the smaller nations and will always prevent them from moving up the ladder.

    That Stephen Fleming left the Test Arena prematurely is a tragedy and one that lays squarely at the feet of NZC.

  • Shark on January 9, 2009, 10:24 GMT

    It would be so easy for the NZC to follow the path the SLC have taken, and to simply re-establish these players that have signed with the ICL. Anyway, it doesn't appear this will happen anytime soon -- the end of India's tour will be when the NZC shows its cards.

    Homer's argument, that the ICL would challenge the BCCI monopoly and, as a result, Indian cricket stability, is unsound. The ICC remains cricket's governing body and, despite history suggesting that they would do very little, they would certainly ensure that the BCCI would reign supreme in India.

    I think that the ICL should complement the IPL: young Indian cricketers may not be given a chance to play in the IPL, and thus want to prove themselves in a non-world class, 20/20 competition. Now these promising talents are being left high and dry and can't play first class cricket! THAT is where the BCCI conduct has been despicable.

  • Gopi on January 8, 2009, 9:42 GMT

    Guys, don't forget - it's the NZC that first gave Bond full clearance to play in ICL before tamely bowing down in front of BCCI and banned him to please the arrogant BCCI. NZC is impotent and doesnt have a backbone. As simple as that!

  • Strike on January 8, 2009, 2:25 GMT

    Homer, take a leaf out of Jay's book, that's how you present the argument. Persisting with the apartheid argument is wrong because it wasn't just about the money, if it was no board would have banned any players from going to SA...they would have just demanded a cut from the proceeds. NZC fight tooth & nail for its players? You definitely don't now NZ crickets history, NZC goes with the most powerful body that delivers the most for its interests, Eng & Aus in terms of votes as their cricket culture and ideas tend to be the same (this is despite poor treatment from Aus until the 70's) & now in a chase for $$ NZC has gone with the IPL, no surprises here. An entrepreneur wouldn't be treated any different. The IPL as a reaction to the ICL? Maybe with helping to speed things up but the BCCI was heading that way anyway. Bond was musing about retiring from tests to lengthen his career & thus his source of income but the salary from the ICL would've meant he could damn the consequences & play

  • simu55 on January 7, 2009, 21:36 GMT

    strip away all the politics, and the fact of the matter is NZ cannot select their best XI (which would always include a fit Bond). International cricket is suffering as a consequence of this.

  • Tim on January 7, 2009, 9:29 GMT

    Shane Bond decided to join the ICL because they had offered him a contract that was properly set up and written. The IPL contract was vague, didn't specify how long he would play for and was nowhere near as explicit as that of the ICL contract. Justin Vaughan probably wrote it up on the back of his newspaper, then got the BCCI rubberstamp for it. So why whould he sign a contract that could backfire and cause him to be locked up in Indian cricket forever, for example? So he signed the ICL contract and the the "moral" and "ethical" thing and stuck with it, like a gentlemen, something quite uncommon in modern cricket. He also knew that his time as a Test cricketer was drawing to a close, leaving the possibility of only limited-overs cricket. Scott Styris now only plays limited-overs cricket for NZ. And he is earning peanuts. Bond needed financial security, not just for himself, but for his family also. So maybe he was not being so selfish after all.

  • Labrat on January 7, 2009, 0:49 GMT

    Most of the players named: Astle, Harris, Cairns, McMillan, Fleming etc are in their late 30s, or were fringe players. I dont think they had the pins pulled on their career.

    Astle could have played the world cup then retired and Fleming could have gone to england last year. But you couldnt say that the others would be playing in the team anymore.

    Only Bond would make the team and maybe H Marshall. And in the match before Bond took 1 for 24 he had figures of 1 for 70odd off 10 overs, and would we really need headlines about another Bond injury scare on match day - we have enough to worry about keeping Oram fit.

  • Hamish on January 7, 2009, 0:01 GMT

    One point not made here is when Bond signed up to the ICL he received approval to do so from NZC. The board then showed it spineless nature by revoking this approval when pressured by the BCCI after it launched the IPL.

    As an Australian it is such a shame that the recent NZ touring team was without Bond. Even when we were dominating world cricket he was the one bowler to shake things up. Please NZC get him back into the international arena now!

  • Sunil on January 14, 2009, 0:36 GMT

    I am wondering why no individual who is a professional Cricketer, challenging BCCI in court. If my profession is to play Cricket, BCCI cannot tell me whom I can or cannot work for unless they are guaranteeing employment and income - and that applies to every cricketer, Indian or non-indian, who is playing in ICL. No one can force ICL and IPL to join and in fact by not joining, they are providing double the employment opportunitites for professional cricketers.

    An employer cannot enforce a non-compete for people that it does not employ. I think this is a very basic and natural principle that is being violated - discrimination and being stopped frm earning a livelihood.

    Can someone with legal experience throw some light?

  • Paul on January 13, 2009, 23:56 GMT

    At least NZ cricket let Bond play. Jason Gillespie was ruled out from taking up a coaching role with Cricket Australia purely because of his ICL links.

    It's madness. So much talent being lost to the game.

  • Steve B on January 13, 2009, 6:07 GMT

    Fantastic commentary / debate. A country with a population and player pool as small as NZ cannot ever afford to have anything better than its best 11 on the park. NZC needs to take fair portion of the blame here. With such a small population and the mass appeal of Rugby, cricket will always be the poor relation. No one can blame Bond & Co. for taking the ICL riches given their ages and the differential between that offer and what they could earn from remaining "on the tour" from NZC.

    It is no surprise that so many have opted to join the ICL.

    Until the IPL/ICL are joined it will always be a problem for the smaller nations and will always prevent them from moving up the ladder.

    That Stephen Fleming left the Test Arena prematurely is a tragedy and one that lays squarely at the feet of NZC.

  • Shark on January 9, 2009, 10:24 GMT

    It would be so easy for the NZC to follow the path the SLC have taken, and to simply re-establish these players that have signed with the ICL. Anyway, it doesn't appear this will happen anytime soon -- the end of India's tour will be when the NZC shows its cards.

    Homer's argument, that the ICL would challenge the BCCI monopoly and, as a result, Indian cricket stability, is unsound. The ICC remains cricket's governing body and, despite history suggesting that they would do very little, they would certainly ensure that the BCCI would reign supreme in India.

    I think that the ICL should complement the IPL: young Indian cricketers may not be given a chance to play in the IPL, and thus want to prove themselves in a non-world class, 20/20 competition. Now these promising talents are being left high and dry and can't play first class cricket! THAT is where the BCCI conduct has been despicable.

  • Gopi on January 8, 2009, 9:42 GMT

    Guys, don't forget - it's the NZC that first gave Bond full clearance to play in ICL before tamely bowing down in front of BCCI and banned him to please the arrogant BCCI. NZC is impotent and doesnt have a backbone. As simple as that!

  • Strike on January 8, 2009, 2:25 GMT

    Homer, take a leaf out of Jay's book, that's how you present the argument. Persisting with the apartheid argument is wrong because it wasn't just about the money, if it was no board would have banned any players from going to SA...they would have just demanded a cut from the proceeds. NZC fight tooth & nail for its players? You definitely don't now NZ crickets history, NZC goes with the most powerful body that delivers the most for its interests, Eng & Aus in terms of votes as their cricket culture and ideas tend to be the same (this is despite poor treatment from Aus until the 70's) & now in a chase for $$ NZC has gone with the IPL, no surprises here. An entrepreneur wouldn't be treated any different. The IPL as a reaction to the ICL? Maybe with helping to speed things up but the BCCI was heading that way anyway. Bond was musing about retiring from tests to lengthen his career & thus his source of income but the salary from the ICL would've meant he could damn the consequences & play

  • simu55 on January 7, 2009, 21:36 GMT

    strip away all the politics, and the fact of the matter is NZ cannot select their best XI (which would always include a fit Bond). International cricket is suffering as a consequence of this.

  • Tim on January 7, 2009, 9:29 GMT

    Shane Bond decided to join the ICL because they had offered him a contract that was properly set up and written. The IPL contract was vague, didn't specify how long he would play for and was nowhere near as explicit as that of the ICL contract. Justin Vaughan probably wrote it up on the back of his newspaper, then got the BCCI rubberstamp for it. So why whould he sign a contract that could backfire and cause him to be locked up in Indian cricket forever, for example? So he signed the ICL contract and the the "moral" and "ethical" thing and stuck with it, like a gentlemen, something quite uncommon in modern cricket. He also knew that his time as a Test cricketer was drawing to a close, leaving the possibility of only limited-overs cricket. Scott Styris now only plays limited-overs cricket for NZ. And he is earning peanuts. Bond needed financial security, not just for himself, but for his family also. So maybe he was not being so selfish after all.

  • Labrat on January 7, 2009, 0:49 GMT

    Most of the players named: Astle, Harris, Cairns, McMillan, Fleming etc are in their late 30s, or were fringe players. I dont think they had the pins pulled on their career.

    Astle could have played the world cup then retired and Fleming could have gone to england last year. But you couldnt say that the others would be playing in the team anymore.

    Only Bond would make the team and maybe H Marshall. And in the match before Bond took 1 for 24 he had figures of 1 for 70odd off 10 overs, and would we really need headlines about another Bond injury scare on match day - we have enough to worry about keeping Oram fit.

  • Hamish on January 7, 2009, 0:01 GMT

    One point not made here is when Bond signed up to the ICL he received approval to do so from NZC. The board then showed it spineless nature by revoking this approval when pressured by the BCCI after it launched the IPL.

    As an Australian it is such a shame that the recent NZ touring team was without Bond. Even when we were dominating world cricket he was the one bowler to shake things up. Please NZC get him back into the international arena now!

  • Dave V on January 6, 2009, 22:52 GMT

    Well hell, I'm not the only person wringing my hands in utter frustration at these non-selections. To me it is basic snobbery conducted by the boards in question. When such talent and raw power such as Bond, Vincent and company are not selected just because they play in a different competition. But this also extends to the domestic scene when I see the likes of Sinclair failing to get selected at all. Is the NZ Cricket Board becomming something of a "gentlemens and all such snobbery" exclusive club? Heck the likes of How and McCullum are out of form, in fact the entire team is out of form and not seeming to care much about the dire situation they are in.

    Let's get some talent back! And start winning SOMETHING!

  • kingofspain on January 6, 2009, 21:42 GMT

    What rubbish, Homer. Your country's board is clearly in the wrong here, it does you no good to pretend otherwise. What business is it of the BCCI's if Darryl Tuffey plays for Auckland?

    NZ should pick Bond straightaway and let the chips fall where they may.

  • Old Fishy on January 6, 2009, 20:25 GMT

    Excellent article "Mr Ford". Homer, your response is pretentious twaddle. New Zealand is little, India is big. The only entreprenuers likely to start a rebel cricket league in NZ are the Tooth Fairy and Father Christmas. But I do blame NZC for this situation as they have been totally gutless in rolling over the the BCCI's demands. We struggle to compete at the best of times and losing top players to Bracewell's ineptitude has been compounded by this situation.

  • Jamie Dowling on January 6, 2009, 20:25 GMT

    NZC's capitualtion before the bullying BCCI had to be the most pathetic sight of last year. The ICL came first, the BCCI threw a strop like a petulant schoolkid and NZC was the first to kneel down before the BCCI. I could use stronger phrases to express my disgust but they're not suitable for this site.

    Cricket Australia and the ECB also deserve a good slating for their attitudes. Let's get this into the courts and sorted for once and for all.

  • Doc on January 6, 2009, 19:39 GMT

    Homer, are you comparing the ICL to apartheid as a reason for India to not have play who NZ selects? That is truly clutching at straws and to be honest offensive. New Zealand should be able to pick it’s best players. Period. If we wish to not pick players to support to the poor BCCI that is obviously in huge financial difficulties it should be our decision not a blackmail type situation that we have now and that you are endorsing.

  • Jay on January 6, 2009, 17:19 GMT

    I think people who are dismayed by the BCCI's behavior should grow up. Here's why.

    Children think there is justice in the world affairs, that all nations are equal and that the weak (if their cause be true) can prevail. They also watch Disney movies.

    Grown-ups understand that nations act out of self interest and that might is the only right in world politics.

    If you can read a history book you ought to know that what is "good" or "right" has only prevailed by also being strong.

    So by all means bemoan the BCCI's conduct but consider two things:

    1. You cannot challenge the BCCI if you are financially irrelevant like NZC is.

    2. Any national board in the BCCI's position would probably do similar things. I mean can you imagine Cricket Australia or the PCB or even the WICB acting against their own interests unless forced by circumstances?

    Sad but true.

  • Angshuman on January 6, 2009, 15:12 GMT

    NZC were the first authority to try and stop BCCI from banning players opting for the ICL from official matches citing these very possibilities. And their fears have come true. Virtually the core of the NZ team are playing nonsense stuff while the national team, which used to be adept at providing surprises to all 'big' teams, now struggles. It is all down to the ineptness of the ICC to stand firm in the face of BCCI's financial 'roar'. But then money always roars ('talks' is a soft word), does it not?

  • chitro sen on January 6, 2009, 15:06 GMT

    Is it only BCCI's god given right to organize cricket in India? And how will foreign players in ICL impact both BCCI's authority and finances? Remember what happened when packer arrived on the scene? Who had to eat humble pie then?

  • Homer on January 6, 2009, 13:51 GMT

    (contd)...

    representative of the nation. And so we would have 15 or so "true" representatives in place, each vying for a piece of the FTP and a seat in the ICC - a recipe for anarchy.

    Finally, hadnt Shane Bond"retired" from Test cricket prior to joining the ICL. And isnt it also true that the NZC worked with Bond prior to joining the ICL to find ways and means of dissuading him from joining?

    Cheers,

  • Homer on January 6, 2009, 13:45 GMT

    Gents/Ladies,

    1. By its very nature, a Cricket Board is a monopoly. And like all monopolies, Cricket Boards will go to any extent to protect their turf.

    2. The IPL came about as a reaction to the ICL, not the other way around. If the IPL had not come about, or failed spectacularly, it would be the ICL that would be the main money spinner in Indian cricket.

    3. The apartheid era comparison may be in poor taste but it does serve the argument - there have been previous precedents where teams have made the willing choice of not playing the other because of their team compositions.

    4.New Zealand's small player base is the greater reason why the NZC would fight tooth and nail if its authority was challenged by some up and comer.

    5. The precedent of recognizing the ICL, which presented itself as an alternate power structure to the BCCI will lead to anarchy. Any Tom, Dick Or Harry will be able to put together a team, seek recognition from the ICC and position itself as the "true" ...

  • Mustafa Moiz on January 6, 2009, 13:07 GMT

    Finally, some sense. If the BCCI doesn't recognize the ICL what right does it have to ban it or any players playing for it? If the BCCI doesn't recognize it it's just like someone playing beach cricket or cricket in their backyard - it's unofficial. The two countries to suffer most are New Zealand and Pakistan.

  • Craig on January 6, 2009, 9:19 GMT

    I think NZC accepting that India will not tour here or host tours from a New Zealand team is an acceptable outcome if it results in us being able to select who we want. I think there has been a grave underestimation of the potential damage to the NZ cricket team caused by the selection of a substandard side.

    If there was an NZ entrepreneur challenging NZC and NZC decided it would refuse to work with them then, regardless of player base or financial state, I would think NZC are just stupid and would totally support India selecting the best possible team when it came time for them to tour here. I just want to watch good cricket.

  • Strike on January 6, 2009, 8:25 GMT

    @Homer, from what I understand the ICL has not undercut the IPL finances the ICL player base largely includes near retired players & Indian players who have spent their years being ignored by international selectors. No undercutting has occurred unless the BCCI was planning a 2nd Division, which is throughly doubtful. You mention an NZ style ICL undercutting the NZC? Given NZ's lack of a player base & its financial state the NZC would happily find a way to work with this businessman no matter what the consequence, in fact we're seeing it right now as the NZC panders to the IPL. Your choice of using the apartheid era 'rebels' as an example is in poor taste & is not applicable here, the 'rebels' made their choice to tour for money which went against a moral/ethical choice by the cricket boards to not tour SA due to the apartheid regime & the fact that 'coloureds' were not able to be selected for the SA team. If the 'rebels' had organized their own XI to tour WI no one would have cared.

  • Beige HQ on January 6, 2009, 8:05 GMT

    Homer: Homer: If a Kiwi entrepreneur put together a league that directly challenged NZC's authority and undercut its finances, the other Test playing nations would tell NZC to stop moaning and get stuffed!

  • Cacodaemon on January 6, 2009, 7:55 GMT

    Homer,

    Could we also say that if Tendulkar is picked to play NZ then it's NZs prerogative to field a team or not? Saying NZ can't play Bond because the other team doesn't want to play against him is childish.

  • Marcus on January 6, 2009, 7:37 GMT

    Homer

    I believe that all boards (BCCI included) agree to follow the Future Tours Program of the ICC, so I don't know if they'd be able to call off their tour if New Zealand selected Bond et al for their Test side.

    The way the BCCI have dealt with this issue is incredible. Parts of it sound suspiciously like blackmail ("Counties can't select ICL players or they won't play in the Champions League") and the rest of it reminds me too much of the D'Oliviera Affair, in which the South African board basically tried to impose conditions on the TCCB about the selection of their team (namely the selection of Basil D'Oliviera). The BCCI are doing much the same thing. I don't mind if they ban Indian ICL players- after all, they run the game in India- but what right to they have to try and force other countries to impose bans on their own ICL players?

  • Andrew McLean on January 6, 2009, 7:30 GMT

    This debate is a bit futile. England were due to have two teams in the now-postponned Champions League Twenty20. Middlesex were "clean" i.e. no ICL players but Kent, the other English domestic finalist, were not. So Kent got the red card and a Pakistan team were instead chosen. India making the rules is the hard reality of cricket at present I'm afraid and let's not forget none of the players (except Bond) are complaining. Let's also hope NZC can up with a clean domestic XI for India to play in its warm-up match in NZ!

  • Ali on January 6, 2009, 7:16 GMT

    India is the America of cricket. They are always right because they are the arbiters of right and wrong. Shane Bond, Hamish Marshall, and even some of the older players still have a lot to offer to NZC. Imagine players like Ross Taylor, Daniel Flynn, Jesse Ryder, Oram, McCullum, O'Brien, Vettori, Southee, playing alongside Astle, McMillan, Adams, Marshall, Bond, and Tuffey.

    You now have an excellent side I haven't even mentioned Fleming and Styris. If you're a New Zealand fan you can blame John Bracewell for pushing these players away and then blame your gutless cricket board. New Zealand, England, Pakistan, South Africa, West Indies, and Sri Lanka should be doing their best to change the status quo rather than accepting it. I personally believe NZ have the talent to be world beaters.

  • Homer on January 6, 2009, 7:05 GMT

    Beige HQ,

    Also "India should play whoever NZ selects in its XI and not be able to influence who it contains - that is how it works for the rest of of the world." - is not necessarily true - tours have been canceled and players have had to be replaced in the 80s because of their participation in the rebel tours to South Africa.

    Cheers,

  • Homer on January 6, 2009, 7:03 GMT

    Beige HQ,

    Are you telling me that the BCCI does not have the prerogative?

    I am not disputing NZ's claim to its team.. By the same token, I dont see how anyone can compel the BCCI to play against the team chosen.

    Also, my basic question has not been answered - if a Kiwi entrepreneur put together a league that directly challenged the NZC's authority and undercut its finances and citizens from other Test playing nations put forth the argument Mr Ford has forwarded?

    Cheers,

  • cody fiddes on January 6, 2009, 6:47 GMT

    i agree as above... it makes me sick how bond is not playing for nz... when we were playing in england bond was down the road playing for his county team taking 6 wickets.. i blame 1 person.. justin vaughn is a muppet and should step down for screwing up bonds deal.. apparnlty bond wanted a ipl deal so he could still play one dayers but vaughnn stuffed it upp..

  • Beige HQ on January 6, 2009, 6:37 GMT

    Homer: Your claim that the BCCI has a prerogative to play or not play against New Zealand's XI depending on who is selected, sounds like bollocks to me. India should play whoever NZ selects in its XI and not be able to influence who it contains - that is how it works for the rest of of the world.

  • Rosh on January 6, 2009, 6:17 GMT

    Cannot believe that a potential great (if not for injuries) such as Shane Bond is left out of a decidedly second rate New Zealand side. This was one modern day pacie who rocked the Aussies in their pomp days. Still remember the 2003 world cup when only an unbelievably bad decision allowed Michael Bevan to rescue the Aussies from a precarious 6 for 70 something before creeping past 200 to beat the Kiwis. Sadly I cannot think of any other fast bowler, apart from the equally talented and destructive South African Brett Schultz, who lost so much due to injuries.

    Shane Bond sure left many a batsman "shaken and stirred" much like his 007 namesake.

  • Stuart on January 6, 2009, 5:48 GMT

    Paul you're exactly right. When Bond wasn't selected for the England home series I thought it was total rubbish because he hadn't even played in the ICL yet.

  • Homer on January 6, 2009, 5:42 GMT

    Fair point Mr Ford - it is New Zealand's prerogative to choose the players it wants for its Test team.

    Likewise, I am sure Mr Ford will not begrudge the BCCI's prerogative in playing or not playing against this New Zealand XI.

    The issue is not of "“overlooking” players who dare to try and earn some mortgage money in an Indian domestic cricket", the issue is one of who represents Indian cricket in the international arena. Mr Ford will do well to remember that the ICL, when it first came into the scene, positioned itself as an alternate to the BCCI. And it will also behoove Mr Ford to remember that the ICL came about because of a conflict between the BCCI and Zee over TV contracts.

    I wonder what Mr Ford's argument would be if the situation was reversed - if a Kiwi entrepreneur put together a league that directly challenged the NZC's authority and undercut its finances and citizens from other Test playing nations put forth the argument Mr Ford has forwarded.

    Cheers,

  • Rashid Khan on January 6, 2009, 5:27 GMT

    I totally agree with Paul. This is state monopoly which is adversley affecting the game of cricket. There are so many talented players in ICL from many different countries that I consider this a loss for Cricket. I'm really amazed that this is allowed to happen in this day & age and particularly by a country which considers itself flag carrier of democracy. India considered itself oppressed until recently as it thought that the game of cricket was controlled by England and Australia. Now the oppressed has become the opressor - is that the justice that India was looking for? And is ICC really a puppet for whom nothing has changed but the puppeter?

  • Yogesh on January 6, 2009, 4:50 GMT

    Perhaps, if India plays a third test vs NZ, then i guess Bond & co can't play in domestic cricket too !! Atleast this clarifies to me why BCCI is willing to play 3rd test against NZ instead of 2 extra ODIs vs SL.

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  • Yogesh on January 6, 2009, 4:50 GMT

    Perhaps, if India plays a third test vs NZ, then i guess Bond & co can't play in domestic cricket too !! Atleast this clarifies to me why BCCI is willing to play 3rd test against NZ instead of 2 extra ODIs vs SL.

  • Rashid Khan on January 6, 2009, 5:27 GMT

    I totally agree with Paul. This is state monopoly which is adversley affecting the game of cricket. There are so many talented players in ICL from many different countries that I consider this a loss for Cricket. I'm really amazed that this is allowed to happen in this day & age and particularly by a country which considers itself flag carrier of democracy. India considered itself oppressed until recently as it thought that the game of cricket was controlled by England and Australia. Now the oppressed has become the opressor - is that the justice that India was looking for? And is ICC really a puppet for whom nothing has changed but the puppeter?

  • Homer on January 6, 2009, 5:42 GMT

    Fair point Mr Ford - it is New Zealand's prerogative to choose the players it wants for its Test team.

    Likewise, I am sure Mr Ford will not begrudge the BCCI's prerogative in playing or not playing against this New Zealand XI.

    The issue is not of "“overlooking” players who dare to try and earn some mortgage money in an Indian domestic cricket", the issue is one of who represents Indian cricket in the international arena. Mr Ford will do well to remember that the ICL, when it first came into the scene, positioned itself as an alternate to the BCCI. And it will also behoove Mr Ford to remember that the ICL came about because of a conflict between the BCCI and Zee over TV contracts.

    I wonder what Mr Ford's argument would be if the situation was reversed - if a Kiwi entrepreneur put together a league that directly challenged the NZC's authority and undercut its finances and citizens from other Test playing nations put forth the argument Mr Ford has forwarded.

    Cheers,

  • Stuart on January 6, 2009, 5:48 GMT

    Paul you're exactly right. When Bond wasn't selected for the England home series I thought it was total rubbish because he hadn't even played in the ICL yet.

  • Rosh on January 6, 2009, 6:17 GMT

    Cannot believe that a potential great (if not for injuries) such as Shane Bond is left out of a decidedly second rate New Zealand side. This was one modern day pacie who rocked the Aussies in their pomp days. Still remember the 2003 world cup when only an unbelievably bad decision allowed Michael Bevan to rescue the Aussies from a precarious 6 for 70 something before creeping past 200 to beat the Kiwis. Sadly I cannot think of any other fast bowler, apart from the equally talented and destructive South African Brett Schultz, who lost so much due to injuries.

    Shane Bond sure left many a batsman "shaken and stirred" much like his 007 namesake.

  • Beige HQ on January 6, 2009, 6:37 GMT

    Homer: Your claim that the BCCI has a prerogative to play or not play against New Zealand's XI depending on who is selected, sounds like bollocks to me. India should play whoever NZ selects in its XI and not be able to influence who it contains - that is how it works for the rest of of the world.

  • cody fiddes on January 6, 2009, 6:47 GMT

    i agree as above... it makes me sick how bond is not playing for nz... when we were playing in england bond was down the road playing for his county team taking 6 wickets.. i blame 1 person.. justin vaughn is a muppet and should step down for screwing up bonds deal.. apparnlty bond wanted a ipl deal so he could still play one dayers but vaughnn stuffed it upp..

  • Homer on January 6, 2009, 7:03 GMT

    Beige HQ,

    Are you telling me that the BCCI does not have the prerogative?

    I am not disputing NZ's claim to its team.. By the same token, I dont see how anyone can compel the BCCI to play against the team chosen.

    Also, my basic question has not been answered - if a Kiwi entrepreneur put together a league that directly challenged the NZC's authority and undercut its finances and citizens from other Test playing nations put forth the argument Mr Ford has forwarded?

    Cheers,

  • Homer on January 6, 2009, 7:05 GMT

    Beige HQ,

    Also "India should play whoever NZ selects in its XI and not be able to influence who it contains - that is how it works for the rest of of the world." - is not necessarily true - tours have been canceled and players have had to be replaced in the 80s because of their participation in the rebel tours to South Africa.

    Cheers,

  • Ali on January 6, 2009, 7:16 GMT

    India is the America of cricket. They are always right because they are the arbiters of right and wrong. Shane Bond, Hamish Marshall, and even some of the older players still have a lot to offer to NZC. Imagine players like Ross Taylor, Daniel Flynn, Jesse Ryder, Oram, McCullum, O'Brien, Vettori, Southee, playing alongside Astle, McMillan, Adams, Marshall, Bond, and Tuffey.

    You now have an excellent side I haven't even mentioned Fleming and Styris. If you're a New Zealand fan you can blame John Bracewell for pushing these players away and then blame your gutless cricket board. New Zealand, England, Pakistan, South Africa, West Indies, and Sri Lanka should be doing their best to change the status quo rather than accepting it. I personally believe NZ have the talent to be world beaters.