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Draft proposal could hit a snag

Nagraj Gollapudi

January 21, 2014

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AHM Mustafa Kamal, Alan Isaac and David Richardson at the ICC executive board meeting, London, Friday, October 18, 2013
The proposal caught the ICC top brass unawares when it was presented in the January 9 meeting © Getty Images
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With Cricket South Africa making public its opposition to the revamp of ICC's structure, formulated by the triumvirate of BCCI, Cricket Australia and the ECB, there is a possibility of the proposal getting blocked should it come to an early vote at the ICC board meeting on January 29.

The proposal, it is understood, was only known to a handful of senior officials from the Big Three who formed part of the "working group" that drafted the document. For it to progress from merely being a proposal or a recommendation - which any individual of the ICC can make - it would need to be approved by a majority during an ICC board meeting.

There is a possibility that the draft "position paper" could be treated more than a routine recommendation. Considering that the draft of the F&CA "working group" has far-reaching changes in administrative structures, financial distribution and the creation of an entirely new commercial wing of the ICC, it could require a "special meeting" to pass what the ICC's constitution refers to as a "special resolution".

To get a special resolution passed, eight out of the 10 Full Members will need to back the proposal according to the ICC Constitution. Article 6.12 a)3)b) in the constitution, which deals with voting on a special resolution, reads: "Resolution proposed at Conference or at a Special Meeting shall be deemed to have been carried as a Special Resolution only if not less than three-quarters of the aggregate number of votes exercisable by all the Full Members shall have been cast in favour of the Resolution, irrespective of whether or not all of the Full Members shall have actually been present in person or by proxy."

Some of the officials from group of seven members, outside the Big Three, ESPNCricinfo spoke to admitted that they were concerned by development. "We have been talking between ourselves. Everyone is disturbed because the draft proposal will have greater repercussions on futures of members' cricket," a senior board official from the seven-member group of nations said. His greatest fear was the Australia-England-India triad were getting the majority of the funds while the G-7 were left with nothing much. "You need money to run the sport. They have proposed to make FTP optional. For such decisions you have to have everybody along. They are acting like UN Security Council where the Big Three have veto powers," the official said.

The "position paper", as the 21-page document was titled, was revealed to the Full Members for the first time during an additional ICC Board meeting to discuss "financial matters" called suddenly on January 9 in Dubai. When the proposal was presented, it not only took the representatives of the rest of the seven Full Members by surprise but also caught unawares the top brass of the ICC, comprising of president Alan Isaac, Mustafa Kamal (vice-president) and Dave Richardson (chief executive).

The meeting will be significant because of the immediacy and urgency spelt out in the "position paper" with respect to the formation of the ICC Business Co (IBC) - a new commercial arm of the ICC which will be set up to replace the existing IDI (ICC Development International). The proposal states that the IBC is to be "established immediately" in order to take overall charge of the next cycle of ICC media and sponsorship rights that cover 2015-2023, starting with the task of issuing media rights tenders. The chairman of the ICC's F&CA committee will also be the chairman of the IBC, appointed through nomination by either the BCCI, Cricket Australia or the ECB.

Nagraj Gollapudi is an assistant editor at ESPNcricinfo

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Posted by Kazi_Rajib on (January 25, 2014, 11:22 GMT)

An appropriate story for Big 3: A poor man and his wife owned a very special goose. Every day the goose would lay a golden egg, which made the couple very rich. One day the man's wife thinks if we could have all the golden eggs that are inside the goose, we could be richer much faster."You're right," said her husband, "We wouldn't have to wait for the goose to lay her egg every day." So, the couple killed the goose and cut her open, only to find that she was just like every other goose. She had no golden eggs inside of her at all, and they had no more golden eggs."Too much greed results in nothing."

Posted by Twinkie on (January 23, 2014, 16:21 GMT)

New riddle people! How shortsighted can you get? As shortsighted as the BCCI, ECB and CA! Let's boycott them and make them play themselves forever! Well maybe not forever. After a year or so no-one will be watching them and they will no longer be playing. Let them pass their proposal. They stand to lose more eventually.

Posted by   on (January 23, 2014, 13:32 GMT)

does ICC work with as one-board-one-vote? If so, then should the story NOT be about the big-three proposal, but about how the big-three plan to bully/coerce the other 7 to vote against their own interests? Why can't the other 7 bring a rival proposal and pass it while they still have this right?

Posted by   on (January 22, 2014, 21:52 GMT)

@Sayak Bhattacharyya, I am completely agree with you.

Posted by   on (January 22, 2014, 18:16 GMT)

@Barry Glynn: The 3rd test between Pakistan and Sri Lanka played on a slow pitch, where Pakistan won in an exciting finish was a real mockery of test cricket!!! Wasn't it. How matches in the sub-continent played in the recent years have ended in a draw? Not many and substantially not many compared to those played in other parts of the world. We recently had a drawn match in New Zealand, South Africa and two in England compared to one in the UAE.

Posted by CM1000 on (January 22, 2014, 15:44 GMT)

@Proud_GhorJamai - I think you would think very differently if your team did better on fast bouncy pitches. I have visited the sub-continent to watch cricket three times and enjoyed it immensely, but there is no doubt that cricket is far more exciting to watch on fast bouncy pitches where you have a serious fear factor involved. The only truly great sides I have ever seen, the West Indies in the 1980's and Australia in the 90's/00's, won everywhere in the world, in all conditions. That is the challenge, and a great challenge it is. But I don't think a sub-continental team will be able to do that until they spice up their pitches a bit more, encouraging fast bowlers to develop, and developing batsmen who can thrive in all conditions. I don't mind the status quo either, when conditions are very different in different countries, but I think its silly to pretend fast bouncy pitches are "futile and a mockery" just because your team hasn't had success in those conditions.

Posted by CM1000 on (January 22, 2014, 15:26 GMT)

@Rasheed Khan - while I agree with your sentiment that this would be very bad for world cricket, I can't agree with your crystal ball. If this goes ahead and most of the money were to go to the Big 3, then cricket will go backwards in most other countries - sport is a profession these days, and without a good income to offer, many of the really talented sportsmen will shun cricket and pursue other sports to make a good income. And the decent talent would probably move to England (who are very open to foreigners in their national side) to play county cricket, earn a decent income and qualify to be part of Tests amongst the Big Three if they are good enough - like is happening to Ireland now. I think a more likely scenario would be that, say, Sth Africa would continue on ok, because there would be demand from the Big Three for them to come, and the hosts would have to make it worthwhile for SA financially. But you would get many more KPs and Trotts moving to the UK, weakening SA.

Posted by   on (January 22, 2014, 15:20 GMT)

This resolution has to be thrown to the dustbin without any further delay. I am a supporter of Indian cricket team, but about BCCI the least said is the best. They should bother more about setting their own house in order. The person who formulated the idea of permanent spot for big three in top tier in Tests due to financial considerations should be awarded a Nobel. Tomorrow they might ask for automatic births for big three in WC semi finals along the same line.

Posted by Proud_GhorJamai on (January 22, 2014, 14:23 GMT)

@barry glynn- we find playing on fast bouncy tracks futile and mockery as well. Its all about the perspective. We don't need England/Australia or India to come over as long as the other 6 keep touring us.

Posted by   on (January 22, 2014, 13:31 GMT)

Riffat As I said it's about money, end of. No mileage in England playing in Bng, no money to be made and playing on low slow tracks is a mockery anyway. More boring Tests have been played over the years on such sub continent pitches than anywhere else in the world. Producing such pitches does Bng no good as India have found out.

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