January 21, 2014

The ICC

The Big Three could hurt global cricket

Harsha Bhogle, in his column for Indian Express, wonders whether having the BCCI, CA and ECB in control of the helm could deter the growth of the game in the fringes, and also lead to an inequity in both revenue and exposure, compared to the lesser fortunate cricketing boards. Since sport has become big business in these markets, the commercial interests could create a detrimental effect as a whole.

Profit by itself is not wrong though. Sport is played, and followed, on emotion but it must be run as an enterprise to have a sustainable future. Interestingly, even charitable institutions are learning that you cannot just be a group of well-meaning people bumbling along. But in sport, as in charity, funds have to be generated for common good. And it is in the distribution of funds that this document seeks to create a group of haves.

Ian Chappell, writing in Mid-day, worries about this 'backward' step in global cricket administration, and brings up the past by mentioning how, until 1993, both England and Australia had held veto power over ICC decisions. The Asian and African nations increasingly felt left behind, and began to rally against the two boards. The return to this style of cricket administration could create more problems than solutions in the months to come.

I understand that financial clout means power. However, it's the way that power is utilised that eventually decides whether a body has been effective or otherwise. The ICC hasn't been an effective body for a long time and yet 'the big three' have essentially been wielding the power. In that period, financial interests have held sway in the decision making process and the new proposals seem to concentrate heavily on that aspect of the operation.

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