Sharad Pawar set to return as an administrator
Sharad Pawar, the former ICC and BCCI chief, is set to return as an active cricket administrator after a two-year hiatus. Pawar is the only candidate in the fray for the post of president of Mumbai Cricket Association ahead of the association's elections on Friday, October 18.
Pawar, who was the MCA president for 10 years from 2001, had a challenger in Gopinath Munde, deputy leader of the principal opposition party in the Indian Parliament. However, on Thursday, incumbent MCA president Ravi Savant upheld the election officer's decision to reject Munde's nomination application on the grounds of him not being a permanent resident of Mumbai or Thane, the two districts that are in the jurisdiction of the association.
Pawar, once elected, will be eligible to return to the BCCI fold as an MCA representative. He is one of the key rivals of BCCI chief N Srinivasan, who, despite having been embroiled in controversies following the IPL corruption scandal, has managed to retain his hold on the board. If Pawar leads the rival group against Srinivasan, it could indeed stir an anti-Srinivasan motion in the coming months.
Meanwhile, caretaking president Savant, who was appointed as a BCCI vice-president on September 29, will be vying for one of the two vice-president posts at the MCA. Savant, Vijay Patil, an incumbent vice-president, and Pankaj Thakur, who is representing a group led by former MCA vice-president Ratnakar Shetty, are in contention for the two posts.
Current joint secretaries Nitin Dalal and PV Shetty from Bal Mahaddalkar panel will face resistance from Dr Unmesh Khanvilkar from Patil's Cricket First and Shetty group's Pravin Barve. Incumbent caretaking vice-president Vinod Deshpande will face current caretaking treasurer Mayank Khandawala for the treasurer's post.
Thirty candidates will be in contention for the 11 managing committee members' posts. Prominent among them are former Test players Lalchand Rajput and Abey Kuruvilla along with former Ranji Trophy paceman Atul Ranade and left-arm spinner Sanjay Patil, all of whom would be representing Cricket First.