ICC reaction to India's selection of Virender Sehwag for Test squad

ICC Media Release

November 28, 2001

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The International Cricket Council (ICC) is disappointed to see that India has named Virender Sehwag in its squad for the first Test Match against England. As has been made abundantly clear, Sehwag is banned from playing in this game and is therefore ineligible for selection.

Given that a comprehensive letter outlining the ICC's position was sent to Jagmohan Dalmiya, President of the BCCI, only yesterday, and that talks between the ICC and the BCCI to bring this situation to the right conclusion are underway, we do not propose immediate action today. Our focus is on resolving the situation before Friday's deadline.

Commenting on the latest development, ICC Chief Executive Malcolm Speed said: "We have made it clear that we will defend the authority of umpires, referees and the ICC itself, and will not accept that Virender Sehwag can play in the first Test against England.

"We are, however, more than happy to "sit down, discuss and to find solutions and avert the crisis" as Mr Dalmiya suggests in his letter to me today. Indeed, that is why I initiated contact with Mr Dalmiya yesterday. We are also prepared to have a full and frank discussion of the issue at the next ICC Board Meeting in March when Mr Dalmiya can put his case, and we can put ours. This is the appropriate forum for this debate.

"We will continue to talk to Mr Dalmiya and his board with the aim of securing confirmation before Friday's deadline that Sehwag will not play in the first Test. Contrary to Mr Dalmiya's assertion, we do not believe it credible that this would result in inquiries by the ICC Anti-Corruption Unit. We are not asking the BCCI to name the Indian team on Friday, simply to confirm that - as a banned player - Virender Sehwag will not be part of it".

The ICC would like to clarify the following:

1) It has been suggested by the BCCI that the match referee contravened Clause G-15 of the ICC Code of Conduct by not giving a reason for adjourning the hearings of the Indian cricketers during the Port Elizabeth Test. In fact, this clause only applies when the referee is seeking further evidence regarding a breach of the Code of Conduct, and this was not the case in this instance. Moreover, under clause H2, the referee is in fact required to adjourn the hearing for a minimum of 30 minutes and a maximum of 24 hours in order to consider his decision. This was the reason for the adjournment and the correct procedures were indeed followed.

2) Much attention has been focused on the referee in this issue. It should be remembered that of the seven disciplinary measures taken during the game (of which two related to Virender Sehwag), five of them were as a result of reports from the umpires.

Media contact:

Jonathan Hemus (28 Nov)/Mark Harrison (29 Nov)

ICC Communications Manager
Tel: + 44 (0) 207 266 7913/1818
Mob: +44 (0) 7720 277180 (Jonathan) + 44 (0) 787 944 1891 (Mark)
Email: mark.harrison@icc-cricket.com

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