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Writing in the Hindustan Times, Kadambari Murali Wade, the former editor of Sports Illustrated India shares her experience of meeting with the Mudgal Committee that was probing the spot-fixing and corruption charges in IPL 2013.
Drawing on her experience of an investigative story published in the magazine, and her interactions with the committee, she says that mere allegations or suggestions of corruption by the committee are not likely to help the cause of Indian cricket.
The ACSU does get information from several sources, players, journalists, officials etc. They reportedly even have several players on an unofficial watchlist. However, they find it difficult to push forward because of a lack of evidence that will stand up in court. Against this backdrop, it is interesting to note that a Supreme Court-appointed committee seems to think there is enough "evidence".
Everyone knows that Indian cricket needs to be cleaned up. But it can't be done on the basis of allegations, unless they've received hard evidence, allegations by a committee of this magnitude could be even more damaging.
Simon Hughes in the Telegraph lauds the ECB's decision to appoint former England wicketkeeper Paul Downton as the board's managing director, stating that the latter is more than capable of rising to the challenges of his new job.
Behind the benign facade was a determination and a commitment to succeed and a total dedication to the team. He does not possess an iota of selfishness, and willingly took on the most demanding role both for Middlesex and subsequently for England, keeping wicket, cheerleading and batting in the middle order. He made the most of his ability. Many times having laboured for hours behind the stumps against the all-conquering West Indies, he went in to face the full wrath of their fearsome pace attack when the chips were down and stabilised the innings. He was a human pacifier.
Deccan Herald runs an editorial on the challenges facing N Srinivasan and the responsibilities to be undertaken by the man who was recently re-elected as BCCI president for a third term.
The way Srinivasan mowed down his detractors was quite ruthless. Niranjan Shah and Sudhir Dabir were shown the door at the first hint of taking sides with the rival camp led by Sharad Pawar and Shashank Manohar. Lalit Modi, once his closest aide and now his strongest critic, has been banned for life from the activities of the BCCI. It's time then for Srinivasan to show the same diligence while reconstructing the battered image of BCCI.
South Africa versus India was billed as one of the premier clashes of the 2013 calendar. Now, however, the tour is almost certain to be stunted from the original three Tests, if not abandoned altogether as the respective boards are locked in a power struggle. If the tour is scrapped, not only will the fans be deprived of some great cricket, Cricket South Africa's finances will also take a big hit. Every domestic cricketer could end up losing R160,000, writes Neil Manthorp in Business Day.
In South Africa the percentage of Cricket SA's (CSA's) gross revenue that comes the way of the players is a little under 20%. If India's tour of South Africa at the end of 2013 is severely curtailed, as it now has to be if it is not cancelled altogether, the likely loss of revenue to CSA will be in the region of R200m. Twenty percent of that is R40m, of which 40% goes directly to the domestic players in the six franchises, a sum of about R2.7m. Each franchise has a contracted squad of about 17 players, which breaks down to an average of R160,000 per player.
The KSCA have targeted grassroots cricket in order to find the next crop of Indian cricketers, and perhaps more importantly, Anil Kumble's management are attempting to provide young cricketers easy access to every facility needed to better their career. So a 33-acre plot of land in Alur, an hour and 20 minutes from Bangalore, has been fashioned into a cricket academy, with hopes of eventually becoming a Centre of Excellence, writes Venkat Ananth in Yahoo Cricket
Inaugurated in June 2012, the Alur facility now houses the Royal Challenge-KSCA Academy, headed by Indian legend Gundappa Viswanath. Srinath said, "Initially, academies in Karnataka were used for specific representational teams, like the Under-19 squad would train here for a camp ahead of a tournament. Access was limited, and it would almost seem like a transit camp. But now the idea is to make full use of the facility all round the year."
In Caravan magazine, Prem Panicker comments on the culture of a 'moral safe-house' within the BCCI, a result of the fact that the board has done little to guard itself against corruption as was evident from the recent instances of conflict of interest within the board.
The problem is rooted in the fact that in the years since 1996, the BCCI perfected to a fine art the business of cricket, and brought unimaginable wealth into the sport, without any revision of operating procedures to guard against corruption. Thus means, opportunity, and the ability to rationalise aberrant behavior--the three classic elements of the fraud triangle--came together. And to this, the BCCI systematically added a fourth element as a safety net: over-arching political patronage.
The schedule of all ICC events until 2023 was determined at the governing body's annual conference in London this June and Pakistan will not be hosting any during that period. Former ICC president Ehsan Mani, in the Express Tribune, criticises the PCB and its acceptance of this proposal, while urging the board to take the necessary steps to bring international cricket back to Pakistan
This development reflects the sad state of affairs within the PCB. The body has been dysfunctional and there has been no strategic planning or a roadmap to bring back international cricket to Pakistan. The bottomline is that no progress has been made since the tragic attack on the Sri Lankan team. They have basically adopted a hit-and-miss approach in asking various cricket boards to pity them and visit. This unprofessional attitude has put them in no-man's land.
Mani Khawaja insists criticism against Najam Sethi's appointment as interim president of the PCB is a sign of people wanting to stir things up. He says Pakistan cricket is in good hands, even if they are largely inexperienced in cricket administration, through a satirical blog entry in the Express Tribune.
With a deteriorating infrastructure that was failing to produce quality cricketing talent, mired in controversies and allegations of nepotism and sexual misconduct, a very capable and seasoned pair of hands was needed to steer the ship back into steady waters.
And that is why the current government went with Najam Sethi, a senior journalist with no prior experience in cricketing matters whatsoever
An unsettled Australian team has historically never done well in England and with problems regarding the team surfacing on this tour, questions are being asked of Australia's ability to match England in the upcoming Ashes. How they counter these problems, according to Tim Lane in the Age, will depend on team unity and the backing that the coaching staff - specifically Mickey Arthur and Pat Howard - can provide to Michael Clarke.
Australian cricket took a long time to accept the concept of a coach. Bob Simpson was the first and he was eventually forced out for being too interventionist. Ian Chappell, who profoundly influenced Australian cricketers over more than one generation, always said coaches were for transportation from hotel to ground. Shane Warne, whose level of influence needs no elaboration, was similarly dismissive. These two are archetypal figures of Australian cricket and their views resonate. Right now, though, it's hard to avoid the view that Clarke needs all the support he can get from off the field. And if that involves tough love, so be it. Those who are causing trouble need to be confronted with the type of coaching discipline footballers expect to receive if they wilfully step out of line.
With the IPL facings its toughest credibility test, the Indian Express' editor-in-chief, Shekhar Gupta, highlights the flaws in the governance of the tournament, including the conflicts of interest that border on corporate fraud and "cricketing permissiveness". The controversy, he says, has presented the BCCI with a critical choice where they can either make the IPL a serious cricket league or reduce it to a mere spectacle.
Some controversy hits the IPL every year. But this controversy is by far the most crippling. Because this has put the credibility of the very league in doubt. It has brought criticism and apprehension to the minds of all kinds of stakeholders, from politicians, who want to nationalise the BCCI or ban the IPL, to Pepsi, which may want out as its lead sponsor. This time, the BCCI cannot blame a mere individual and hang him. Nor can it rely on the old cynical and lazy notion that cash will solve all problems. It has to clean up not just the IPL, but itself, make a promise of transparency and offer itself voluntarily to some kind of an impartial, outside oversight, if not RTI
Since its inception, the Indian Premier League has gained recognition not just for the talent on display but for the role it has played in sustaining the sport around the world. Given this stature, the recent controversy surrounding the participation of Sri Lankan players and the IPL's response to the issue may have done the game a disservice, writes Mini Kapoor in the Indian Express.
The roll call of names is important because this expedient measure is, in the end, about them. It is not based on some abstract principle of not playing cricket with another country, which, highly debatable though it may have been, would have moved the discussion away from the field of play. As the state of play currently stands, Sri Lankan players are very much part of the IPL, they will play at other venues, and it is only on account of presumed security concerns in Tamil Nadu that they will not be allowed to alight on the Chennai ground. This move is, then, clearly not about using sport as an element of coercive diplomacy to pressure the Sri Lankan government to deliver on devolution, reconciliation and rehabilitation. It is only targeted at a bunch of individuals to make some point -- which is what exactly?
A sportsman has to grapple with the challenges of life after retirement, sometimes having to compromise his self esteem, as in a career in administration, writes former India allrounder Sanjay Bangar in cricketnext.com.
As soon as he retires from that sport, the general popularity slowly starts to decrease due to short public memory. From the limelight, he suddenly finds himself one among many normal people. It is also a very difficult period for him to make a career choice again in his life as he is still is in his mid-thirties. He has to reset his goals and take a decision as to whether he should be associated with the sport. Most players take up coaching if they are qualified enough to acquire the mandatory basic courses. If they are popular with the administrators they could get lucrative posts of selectors, referees etc.
However at this point, he is not generally aware of the kind of profile an administrator has to have to turn out to be good at it. Since the posts of president and secretary are generally the most desired ones, and are appointed through elections, a former player has to go begging for votes. Thus at the very first step, he starts compromising on his self esteem. One also has to be very particular of the protocol to soothe big egos.
Writing in Mint about the proposed law to regulate sports bodies in India, Ayaz Memon points out that the Indian government has a dismal track record in sports administration. He believes though that the BCCI must be more transparent and open to public scrutiny.
The BCCI functions like some freemasonry, shrouded in secrecy and with a veneer of arrogance, which is not just unnecessary but also unacceptable in current climes. That said, I am vehemently opposed to the government taking over the BCCI; indeed, all sports bodies should be disencumbered from the government if Indian sport is to make real headway.
The Australian system, according to me, has strong merits. There is no sports ministry in that country. The government provides broad guidelines—sports for all, zero-tolerance for drugs and promoting health and healthy competition—on which the Australian Sports Commission (ASC) acts in collaboration with various federations and associations.
An editorial in the Indian Express says the proposed bill should "unquestionably be seen as a naked power-grab". In the same paper, Desh Gaurav Chopra Sekhri, while praising the bill's intents, questions its scope and methodology.
Bringing the BCCI under the RTI might be plausible when it comes to profit-making, or conflicts of interest-related queries. However, given an unlimited licence to question each aspect of the NSF’s activities and authority, it’s more than likely that the RTI will become a national referendum on team-selection processes involving the public. The risk of frivolity is extreme, and could actually inhibit any professional progress made by those federations who actually intend to promote and develop their respective sports.