India news September 5, 2014

Botham 'should get his facts correct' - BCCI secretary

ESPNcricinfo staff

The BCCI secretary Sanjay Patel has criticised former England captain Ian Botham for his comments on the Indian Premier League, saying the latter should have got his facts right during his speech at the annual MCC Spirit of Cricket Cowdrey Lecture at Lord's on September 3.

Botham had said that the IPL was "too powerful" for the good of cricket and believed it should not exist. He said that the tournament provided the "perfect opportunity for betting and therefore fixing" and, on the subject of corruption, also called on the ICC to do more to expose the "big names" involved.

"Let him get his facts correct first. He has asked how the other boards have allowed IPL to happen. The BCCI has distributed over US $10 million as compensation to the other cricket boards for allowing their players to play in the IPL," Patel told PTI.

Patel also brought up Botham's association with Texas financier Allen Stanford, who had plans for an IPL-style T20 league before he was arrested for financial fraud.

"I can still visualise the photo of Botham sitting in the front when Stanford went to England. And he has the temerity to talk about IPL. We don't want his advice. We have enough top players like Sunil Gavaskar, Ravi Shastri, Kapil Dev and Rahul Dravid to advise us," Patel said.

The BCCI secretary said that it was "premature" to discuss the possibility of Shastri being appointed director of the Indian team for the 2015 World Cup, after his recent success in England, where the ODI team has dominated the series. Shastri had been team director for the one-day series after India's 1-3 loss in the Test series in England.

"It's premature to talk about this. Let this ODI series be over first," Patel said. "He was very gracious to accede to the BCCI's request when we approached him after the Test series. He said he was always there for India and Indian cricket and accepted it without any preconditions. We will certainly compensate him for whatever he has lost by way of not fulfilling his contract as a TV commentator and media columnist."

Patel also addressed the issues relating to the Goa Cricket Association, which has been threatened with de-recognition by the state government due to the fall-out of a fake ticket scam in 2001. The state government has asked incumbent president Vinod Phadke to step down due to his alleged involvement in the scam and has warned the association that it could be de-recognised for failing to implement the recommendation of the Justice Pendse Commission, which was investigating the issue of bogus tickets during the 2001 ODI between India and Australia at the Nehru Stadium, Fatorda.

"The GCA does not get any financial support from the state government," Patel said when asked about this controversy.

Phadke has defiantly claimed that he has the backing of the BCCI and will stick to his post.

"There is no question of me stepping down," Phadke told PTI on Thursday. "I have informed the BCCI about the show cause notice issued by the state government. The BCCI is firmly behind me. I will be meeting the board officials within a week over the issue."

Comments have now been closed for this article

  • Rahul on September 7, 2014, 3:45 GMT

    Mr patel u r absolutely right here. ....

  • David on September 7, 2014, 1:38 GMT

    @ Chris_P. Thanks for the chuckle. Nice one.

  • Dummy4 on September 6, 2014, 9:29 GMT

    BCCI's makes it mandatory for every player to get NOC from their home board to play in the IPL. If Botham feels that IPL is disrupting cricket in other countries, he should ask them to not give the NOC to their players.

  • Dummy4 on September 6, 2014, 5:01 GMT

    Good article and answered all his botham's doubt.

  • Sudhir on September 6, 2014, 3:42 GMT

    Let's be civil- both sides.

  • Peter on September 5, 2014, 20:59 GMT

    @Greatest_Game. How can you possibly say that. Doesn't Mr Patel willingly allow players to play for their countries & own domestic teams before his IPL? He would never envisage disrupting teams preparations for vital tests, of course not!

  • Colin on September 5, 2014, 18:33 GMT

    I am a huge Botham supporter and although I only saw the latter years of his career, he is clearly the greatest England cricketer of his generation. I do feel he has turned the much respected Cowdrey lecture into a Cowdrey rant. I do not really care for T20 and think that it is encroaching onto world cricket too much but I wouldn't blame the IPL solely! The IPL gives cricketers a place to earn great money and you could say earn enough to keep them from being tempted by match fixing.

  • David on September 5, 2014, 16:14 GMT

    Sanjay Patel is a man known to have a problem separating fact from fiction. I am no supporter of Botham, but this is surely a case of the pot calling the kettle something?

  • Arshad on September 5, 2014, 16:04 GMT

    Sir Ian Bothm is soo spot on here - as always

  • Robin on September 5, 2014, 11:10 GMT

    Botham only watches cricket matches, where he is paid to do so. Listen to him and David Lloyd..they struggled to remember the names of the Indian players prior to this series. Nasser watches all the Indian can tell.

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