ICC's revamp plans January 20, 2014

Boards silent on ICC revamp consequences

ESPNcricinfo staff

The ICC's Board meeting on January 9, where full member boards were presented with a "working group position paper" was unscheduled, called in without any agenda other than a hint that "financial matters" would be discussed. What the members were presented with instead, was a radical overhaul of the administration and finances of the world body, being told that the plan had been six months in the making. Giles Clarke of the ECB opened the discussion and the "position paper" was presented by BCCI president N Srinivasan.

The head of one of the boards outside the Big Three (Australia, England, India) said the draft paper "came out of nowhere. Nothing had been hinted at." The role of the England and Australian boards have surprised a few, with one official saying, "I don't think the plan would have worked if either of other two had not acceded. It is devastating."

Apart from New Zealand Cricket's director Martin Snedden and Bangladesh Cricket Board president Nazmul Hassan, there has been little official comment on the draft paper from all the member boards, particularly those outside the Big Three. Hassan told reporters in Dhaka on Monday that Bangladesh could not raise a voice of protest.

"We can't do anything on our own. I can protest but if the other nine countries are on one side, there's not much I can do," Hassan said. "I have to find countries who are in our position, read through the proposals and then think what to do."

Other than the BCB and CSA, the countries who disagree with the proposals do not wish to be identified. However, the WICB and one other board have called special meetings since news of the papers was released last week. The member boards are in discussion with each other about the documents.

Tony Irish, chief executive of the South African Cricketers' Association defined the document as, "concerning," saying it will have "significant implication for cricket, particularly for smaller countries of which South Africa is one - revenue wise." South Africa's alienation by the Big Three - either from being involved in the formulation of the plan or as a beneficiary in their Test match fund to support smaller nations - is deliberate. South Africa are ranked No.1 on the ICC's Test rankings but find themselves ranked below Pakistan at the highest level of revenue share projections. It is understood that there had been "overtures" on behalf of the Big Three and the South Africans, and presenting them with the choice of finding themselves in the "top four or the bottom six." Cricket South Africa's (CSA) response in the situation, should the matter go to vote in the Board meeting on January 28-29, may well hold the answer to that particular question put to them.

When the details of the document were presented at the meeting, there were very few questions raised and the Australia-England-India triad are confident enough to generate the numbers they need, seven votes out of ten on the Boards. The backroom work has been done in the form of the quid pro quo terms - hosting ICC events, lucrative bilateral deals in the newly-generated FTP, even surrogate hosting of IPL matches due to the fact that this year's season will coincide with the Indian general elections.

Comments have now been closed for this article

  • babai on January 24, 2014, 16:23 GMT

    What matters is Indian companies generate money in Cricket, not ICC or BCCI.. SO the money should come back to Indian people..

  • Donna on January 23, 2014, 17:36 GMT

    There was a time not so long ago when a Windies team's visit guaranteed every cricket board a huge crowd, sponsorship and media coverage. We were the glamour boys who raised the bar! Many people started following cricket because of our brand. You greedy guys shared in the profits then! Now we're in a slump you complain about carrying us. Remember this, empires, nations, economies AND CRICKETING TEAMS rise and fall! Enjoy your ride while it lasts!

    West Indian cricketers, please remember your history! It is time to rise against the odds. We did it before. We can do it again. We did not have deep pockets. then so nothing has changed but our attitude. Are we really going to let them dis us like that?

  • Ricardo on January 22, 2014, 13:53 GMT

    the fact that test cricket, and the structure of the international cricket, is a good thing. now something positive has started - lets get a sensible conclusion out if it.

  • Monjur on January 22, 2014, 12:07 GMT

    Propose a counter draft guys. Propose that the current FTP is biased and need to be reviewed, re-scheduled with equal number of tests, equal presence in ICC by all members, removal of full member and associate member status and let all the members be general members, etc. Go for globalisation, not for autocracy. The big teams are so worried now because of the improvements the emerging teams are making. I can see Afganistan beating India by big margins in T20s already and India knows it too.

  • Dummy4 on January 22, 2014, 11:12 GMT

    what a shame bcb should raise their voices against big 3,,,,they are going to destroy world cricket.

  • Abdul on January 22, 2014, 9:06 GMT

    What's going on? Cricket will dies. Only BIG 3 will found interest to play each other. I can guarantee that BIG 3 fan's not want to boring by seeing same country. Overall cricket is dying in the name of commercialism. Cricket is game. Not Business. Big 3 want to business with cricket. So let them do this. Rest 7 will form New ICC where cricket will more important then money. Totally frustrating.

  • Dummy4 on January 22, 2014, 4:11 GMT

    Lets solve a riddle. Say all the boards who are silent (8 out of 10) are assured that their interest will be protected despite the fact that this proposal ensures "bigger share for elite 3". Now how that can be done? By starving the remaining 2 and feeding their share to the other 5 + 3

    Now cricket dies in SA and PAK, or they join the remaining 8. Now having the small minded Big3 getting bigger share, someone has to get less.

  • Alex on January 21, 2014, 22:10 GMT

    I would not mind big 4 that includes SA

  • Syed on January 21, 2014, 21:17 GMT

    The coward and spineless (worthless as well) Nazmul Hassan is acting more for Indian interest than his own country's. The only reason I can see for this is: India-England-Australia are more worried about more and more Associate countries doing well and inproviong gradually. The way Cricket is being governed in these 3 countries, India will have very few quality players in the coming decades, England will start losing Irish and SA supplies, and Aussies will get more One-dayers than anything else. My guess is that they are trying to protect their financial interest at the cost of Cricket itself. What a shame!

  • WI on January 21, 2014, 12:59 GMT

    The big three are trying hijack world cricket. When did cricket become more about money and less about the sport? If they manage to get 7 votes this will destroy world cricket. I hope the other test playing nations will form their own board and play their own competitions. Let's see how interesting the big 3 will be then. So far only CSA has openly spoken out against this. Where are Pak, WI, NZ, SL, Bang, Zim? This should not be allowed to happen.

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