ICC news July 19, 2014

Richardson points to BCCI 'gamesmanship' during ICC restructure

ESPNcricinfo staff

David Richardson, the ICC's chief executive, has said the BCCI had indulged in "gamesmanship" and conceded it was "in the driving seat" during negotiations over the controversial restructuring of the ICC.

Earlier this year, the BCCI, the ECB and Cricket Australia proposed a radical overhaul of the ICC, including increased shares of global revenue for all three and powerful positions on a newly-formed executive committee. Although there were concerns from other countries, outside the Big Three, they were all eventually talked around into accepting the various proposals.

BCCI secretary Sanjay Patel had stated that the Indian board had threatened to form a parallel world cricket body if its demand for a greater revenue share was not met. Although Richardson did not confirm that when questioned on the BBC's Test Match Special, he did not deny that the BCCI had played a forceful hand.

"India were saying, 'We need to have more of a say, we need more money'. So it was a negotiation; it turned into a negotiation," he said. "There was gamesmanship, certainly some people have more influence than others and more authority.

"Certainly India are in the driving seat when it comes to being in a good position at the negotiating table, bearing in mind their tours of every country are the extreme revenue generators."

Richardson also suggested that the new structure was not an outright power grab and instead just a way of formalising what had unofficially been taking place for some time. He added that the full ICC Board, which is made up of the 10 Full Members and three Associate representatives, remained the main decision-making group and not the new Exco.

"The reality is although there's been a lot of talk about change, it is the people who were having the most influence of the ICC board in the past that will still have the most influence going forward," Richardson said. "It is a clash of ideologies essentially; there are people who think the ICC should be a more independent body and others think it should remain a members' body.

"More than anything this has been a wake-up to other countries who have sat back and let things happen, having no real say at meetings.

"There were people attending meetings, sometimes seemingly sleeping at them, not participating, not contributing.

"When that happens there is going to be a power vacuum and people who have the authority are going to take control."

Richardson also defended the appointment of N Srinivasan as ICC chairman despite India's Supreme Court ordering him to stand down from his BCCI role as part of corruption investigations in the IPL.

"The Supreme Court has not gone as far as to say he should not be involved with ICC or be the next chairman," said Richardson. "What we do know is the Supreme Court charges to be investigated are totally unsubstantiated at this point in time."

Comments have now been closed for this article

  • Grand on July 19, 2014, 13:55 GMT

    @Ajanthan Shantiratnam, Well it's pretty simple really. Let's say there are 4 teams out there - A, B, C and D. When B plays C & D the revenue is around $x. When C plays D the revenue is in the same ballpark. However, when B, C and D play A the revenue is $z where z>>>x (> represents greater in magnitude or number). This is exactly the case here. Plenty of reports have indicated that for some teams, an India tour is the only one which rakes in money & profits which in turn subsidises the tours of other nations. There are some reports and analysis available which show India contributes nearly 75-80% of the global cricketing revenue, which is a huge number really.

    Rather than disputing the fact that India is indeed the financial engine of the game, we should be looking at how cricket can grow so that this dependence on a single nation is reduced and the financial clout is balanced globally. Unless that happens India will continue calling the shots. That's what happens everywhere else.

  • ESPN on July 19, 2014, 12:00 GMT

    May I ask how do you attribute the credit to India when more money is generated? Why cannot you say the world pay more to see every country play Against India? How come the money becomes theirs?

  • vas on July 19, 2014, 6:30 GMT

    BCCI was right in asking for more money than the 4% it was receiving. Now BCCI has to rethink about the DRS. Current DRS is working very well. Correcting many wrong decisions. DRS was the difference between SL winning and losing the test series v England.

  • vishal on July 19, 2014, 4:47 GMT

    "..their tours of every country are the extreme revenue generators." this is the KEY in this whole thing and media keeps neglecting. One country cannot keep bringing in 70 percent of Cricket revenues and expect to get as much as bangladesh in return.. that's just pathetic. this was all for money and BCCI needed to do it. if Indian companies are paying for these revenues then indian public should get back more too.

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