The West Indies crisis October 18, 2014

BCCI's damages bill to West Indies may touch $65m

West Indies pullout means India have missed out on 12 days of international cricket at home this season © BCCI

The BCCI is likely to claim damages of at least Rs 400 crore (US$65 million approx) from the WICB for West Indies having pulled out of the tour to India. The BCCI's working committee will decide whether to go ahead with the claim at a meeting on October 21 in Hyderabad.

West Indies had agreed to play five ODIs, a Twenty20 and three Tests in India, but pulled out after the fourth ODI, in Dharamsala, due to the players being displeased over a revision to their payment structure. This meant that the BCCI lost out on revenue for 17 match-days. Though Sri Lanka agreed to fill in for West Indies and play five ODIs in India in November, the BCCI will still lose income for 12 match-days for the 2014-15 season. The BCCI is likely to claim those damages from the WICB.

"We have referred the matter to our legal cell and asked them to let us know by 21st about how we can pursue the issue legally," BCCI secretary Sanjay Patel told ESPNcricinfo, declining to elaborate on the numbers since he said they were still being computed. "They [WICB] entered into a bilateral agreement with us, and they abandoned the tour due to their internal issues, so we will have to seek compensation. But, depending on the legal advice, the working committee will decide the future course of action."

For the 2013-14 season, revenue for each match-day of India's home series against West Indies was believed to be approximately Rs 33 crore. BCCI insiders revealed that the 2014-15 season's estimation was "around the same as last year". This would mean that the West Indies' pullout will result in BCCI losing at least Rs 396 crore.

According the agreements signed between Full Members for bilateral series, each board keeps the revenue generated for their home series and incur logistics costs from the time the visiting team arrives in the country till they board a return flight.

The BCCI's revenue is primarily generated through broadcast sponsorship, series-title sponsorship, team-title sponsorship, apparel sponsorship, minor share of advertising from host broadcaster, gate receipts and in-stadia advertising. Since the broadcast and series-title sponsorships deals are on a per match basis, irrespective of whether it's a T20, Test or ODI, that income is unlikely to be affected since the five cancelled matches against West Indies (three Tests, an ODI and a Twenty20) will be replaced by five ODIs against Sri Lanka. The apparel sponsorship deal is for a fixed amount, irrespective on the number of matches at home.

However, since the broadcaster's revenue through advertising is going to be affected with the loss of 12 match-days, including a full Test series, that will have an impact on the BCCI's coffers as the board gets a minor share of advertising revenue from the host broadcaster. Also, it is likely that Star India, the host broadcaster, may ask for a reduction in broadcast fees which they have been paying to the board. At the moment, Star India pays the BCCI Rs 43.20 crore per match.

The decrease in broadcast revenues will also impact the state associations since the BCCI distributes 70% of it equally amongst the 27 members who participate in the Ranji Trophy. Besides, if any of the five state associations that were allotted one of the cancelled games against West Indies don't get a game against Sri Lanka, they will also lose out on substantial income. The host associations get to keep income generated through ticket sales and in-stadia advertising.

Amol Karhadkar is a correspondent at ESPNcricinfo

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