India news March 27, 2014

Gavaskar open to interim BCCI chief role

ESPNcricinfo staff

Sunil Gavaskar, the former India captain, has said that he is willing to take over the role of the interim BCCI president after the Supreme Court suggested his name as one of the eligible persons to replace N Srinivasan. Gavaskar, who is contracted with the BCCI as a television commentator, said that he was ready to give up that job and take over as BCCI president, an honorary position. At the same time, Gavaskar made it clear that he disagreed with the suggestion of former board president Shashank Manohar, that the IPL be suspended this season.

"When the highest court in the land tells you to do something, then you have no choice in the matter," Gavaskar told NDTV, an Indian news channel. "But it has to also to be put on record that I am contracted to BCCI TV to do television commentary. If after that the honourable Supreme Court tells me to do that, then quite clearly you have little choice left."

Asked whether he was willing to forsake his commentary assignments, Gavaskar said he would be "happy" to do it. "If the Supreme Court asks me to do something I will do it. There is no question about it. I will be very happy to do it. I will just consider [it] a huge privilege and a huge honour, the Supreme Court feels I'm good enough to handle that interim job," Gavaskar said.

Despite Gavaskar being open to the position, a senior BCCI official was not confident that the former India captain had thought the issue through. "Sunil Gavaskar is a person who gets Rs 2.5 crore (US$415,000 approx.) from doing commentary. So he is a paid employee of the BCCI. As a BCCI president he will get zero. It is up to him to decide to give up Rs 2.5 crore and then come and sit as a BCCI administrator. It is a huge amount of money. I would not have done that," the BCCI official said.

According to the official, under its constitution, the BCCI could not appoint Gavaskar - an outsider - as its president. "The court wants the BCCI to make the appointment, but the board cannot make someone an interim president going beyond the terms of its own constitution. That will be violating its own rules. The only way to get Gavaskar a president is for the Supreme Court to pass an order," the official said. "The court can't make a proposal and expect the BCCI to go beyond its constitution. That will be setting a wrong precedent."

According to this official, under the board's constitution, the only eligible candidate is Shivlal Yadav, the BCCi's senior-most vice-president. The official pointed out D Subba Rao, the secretary of the Andhra Cricket Association, who is considered one of the frontrunners for the post, is not eligible considering he is not a vice-president.

Comments have now been closed for this article

  • Hari on March 28, 2014, 5:17 GMT

    With due respect to the honourable court, I do not think Gavaskar is the right person. The right person has to be found from "within the provisions of BCCI constitution". If the person has to be from South as per convention, the convention has to be respected and upheld. If the person has to be a Vice President or equivalent or above of a state association, it has to be so. Someone who has not even contested an election (let alone winning) cannot and should not be brought in as an administrator. Brijesh Patel is definitely a much better choice than Shivlal Yadav or D Subba Rao

  • Dummy4 on March 28, 2014, 4:51 GMT

    With due respect to the suggestion and Gavaskar the legend of a cricketer, the need of the hour is for a man who can stand for principles, regardless. Sunny had taken a paid position with BCCI and has remained silent on DRS as well as on the 'conflict of interest' of officials owning teams. Does he have the credentials then to hold the interim job?

  • Naresh on March 27, 2014, 22:22 GMT

    The court looks towards a change from the past whereby the BCCI- they want an ex-cricketer taking over -

  • Dummy4 on March 27, 2014, 18:24 GMT

    Shivlal yadav was an off spinner who played for India. He used to get useful 20s lower down. He might be ok with Gavaskar and Kumble to help.

  • Jay on March 27, 2014, 17:52 GMT

    FINE judgement by the Hon. Supreme Court of India. ONLY a CRICKETER should govern the sport in India from here. We don't need politicians and business big wigs to call the shots any more. I am very happy today. Although, I am not so sure about suspending CSK and RR because of 2 guys. The players are innocent here and why must they suffer ?

  • N on March 27, 2014, 17:44 GMT

    Kumble is the man! Or Ganguly. These two guys are excellent leaders.

  • C on March 27, 2014, 13:53 GMT

    Sad day for Indian cricket that Shivlal Yadav is the only eligible candidate to be BCCI president. For all those who think only cricketers make good sports administers, take a look at Yadav's record at Hyderbad Cricket Association. The only fit candidate today from cricketers is Rahul Dravid. He is good, fair and honest. Jagdale and Shirke are also good competent men.

  • Harry on March 27, 2014, 13:45 GMT

    With all due respect to the court, Gavaskar is not the right choice even as an interim chief. Neither is Shastri or Kapil Dev. These guys are cricketing legends but are not suitable for an administrative post like this. Kumble is the best choice since he has served as an administrator before for Karnataka and proven himself.

    The best candidate is Shivlal Yadav since he is already on the board as a VP and if the court feels it then Gavaskar or Kumble can be chief operating office for cricket reporting to the President.

  • Ashok on March 27, 2014, 12:58 GMT

    I am delighted to hear that Gavaskar is the Supreme Court designee to replace Srinivasan. It is great to have a World class Cricketer who has called "Spade a spade"! Gavaskar's recent comments about exclusion of some really deserving batsmen & bowlers from the XI showed that he cared more about cricketing abilities than petty politics that has plagued the Indian Team in all formats of the game. BCCI needs a President who is more interested in using the right Criterion for selection into the XI- Fitness, Form & Ability of the Cricketer. The very basis of selection of President of BCCI is political. This has deprived BCCI in caring more for the game of Cricket & having the right Cricket Culture. Gavaskar will bring in those qualities being an outstanding Cricketer + being a Team Selector + a cricket Commentator. I hope this replacement becomes a reality so that India can enjoy some real changes including support for gender equality such as contracts for Indian Women's Cricket team!

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