Sri Lankan cricket

Sri Lanka lifts domestic ban on ICL players

Sa'adi Thawfeeq

September 19, 2008

Comments: 84 | Text size: A | A

Marvan Atapattu and Russel Arnold's bans have been lifted © AFP

Sri Lanka Cricket (SLC) has broken ranks with the official cricketing establishment by deciding to allow five cricketers and an umpire who last year signed up for the unauthorised ICL to play domestic cricket. The significant decision was taken by SLC's interim committee last week and has become public two days after the Bangladesh Cricket Board (BCB) became the latest nationol body to ban its ICL cricketers from all forms of official cricket.

ICL officials have welcomed the move as "a step in the right direction".

The five cricketers who are now eligible to play for their respective clubs are Marvan Atapattu, the former Sri Lanka captain, Russel Arnold, Upul Chandana, Avishka Gunawardene and Saman Jayantha; the umpire is Ranmore Martinesz. Atapattu, Arnold and Chandana retired from international cricket to play in the ICL, and will now be seen in Sri Lanka's Premier League and the limited-overs tournament, which are scheduled to start next month.

Duleep Mendis, the chief executive of SLC, told Cricinfo the board's interim committee took this decision at a meeting following a request from the cricketers. "The interim committee has allowed these ICL players to play in domestic cricket after they sought permission to do so. This decision refers to a specific application from a specific group of players to take part in domestic cricket," Mendis said. He refused to comment on whether similar waivers would be granted in future to cricketers who take part in subsequent editions of ICL -- the league's second season starts on October 10.

"Players will be allowed to play for their respective clubs and share their expertise, but cannot represent the country," Shane Fernando, the Sri Lanka Cricket media manager, told AFP.

"This is a step in the right direction," Himanshu Mody, the business head of ICL, told Cricinfo. "We hope that this decision paves the way for Sri Lankan cricketers to play for the ICL and their country in the near future."

The Sri Lankan move was not unexpected, though, after SLC invited Arnold and Chandana to attend post-match prize distribution ceremonies during the Indian series in August. That was in stark contrast to the approach adopted by the BCCI and other national boards, which have banned ICL cricketers from all official platforms - the trade laws in UK, however, ensure that these players can play county cricket.

The Indian board, meanwhile, has expressed disappointment at the Sri Lankan move and said it will take up the matter with the ICC. "We are disappointed by this move from Sri Lanka," Niranjan Shah, the BCCI secretary, told Cricinfo. "We will now refer the matter to the ICC, which is already debating the issue of unauthorised cricket."

The ICC, which has formed a committee on unauthorised cricket, had clarified that any move to ban such players will "have to be taken by the respective boards of the concerned players".

SLC had banned these cricketers last year when they joined the ICL which was in direct conflict to the BCCI-run IPL where 13 cricketers from the national team participated. The BCB on Wednesday banned 13 of its ICL cricketers, including Habibul Bashar, the former captain, for ten years from domestic and international cricket.

(Additional reporting by Ajay S Shankar)

RSS Feeds: Sa'adi Thawfeeq

© ESPN Sports Media Ltd.

Posted by CricketPissek on (September 22, 2008, 13:29 GMT)

Cannuck (isn't that a rude way of addressing Canadians?), I'm the one who was questioning the timing :) I do think that it is definitely the way it should be, the BCCI should have NO say in what happens in domestic cricket of other countries, let alone international cricket. Bt what feels a bit dirty is that how SLC did it AFTER BCCI helped them out. If they did it beforehand of course, the tour never would have happened. So it's very street smart of the SLC and a good compromise I suppose (that they still have the ban on int'l cricket). So i do agree with you. But i'm still sure the BCCI will see it as being ungrateful. And as someone else mentioned, no politician should be trusted :) trust Arjuna to get something done, but i wouldn't want him to hold on to my lunch money! (or my lunch?)

Posted by BUNDS on (September 22, 2008, 2:41 GMT)

BCCI is a bully because of its financial strength. Who cares? No one should bow down to their pressure. Even in the case of Andrew Symonds racial villification case the punishment meted out to Harbajan should never have been lifted. He is another guy keeping his feet six foot above the ground. I do not say what Andrew Symonds did was right but the point we should respect the decision of the Match Referee

Posted by nasampath on (September 21, 2008, 14:25 GMT)

If BCCI by virtue of its wealth could attempt arm twisting tactics with ICC and all other boards, it should be prepared to take its own medicine. I wish ICL is recognised soon by the ICC and also BCCI with prudence prevailing over.With a matured man in Sharad Pawar at the helm, I am confident the resistence to ICL will wane away lest BCCI sooner or later may be forced to accept the reality with a pinch of salt.After all those who govern the board should understand that they are in limelight only because of the performance of the players which only is paving the way for all the revenue and richness of the BCCI. Its time they shed their needless fear undeserving ego and above all the arrogance.

Posted by vivekbharathi on (September 21, 2008, 13:01 GMT)

Bravo Arjuna. What will BCCI do now? Interesting times ahead. Am sure Modi will come up with something.

Posted by Aumlan on (September 21, 2008, 2:11 GMT)

Finally !!!! Finally, it took a certain Arjuna Ranatunga to show some spine... bravo, Arjuna, bravo others who supported him, and hope this leads to a scenario where the BCCI propensity to domineer & bull-doze, is fixed. Can the other boards also pls show similar spine?

Posted by Cannuck on (September 20, 2008, 19:45 GMT)

I read through almost 45 plus comments out of 69 that commended SLC's brave decision, before I came across to just 2 negative comments in total. In that sense it's clear that the huge majority of Cricket fans are with the SLC & resent the BCCI dominating ICC & other country's boards set up. One had wondered if the timing was right by SLC to take this stance against BCCI, since they helped out a debt ridden SL cricket. Actually in reality all SLC has done is allow their players to play ONLY domestic Cricket, & not represent the COUNTRY. It is not going against ICC, but showing the world that no out side body can dictate what happens in their back yard. This is a very smart move by SL, specially since majority of their ICL players are already retired. Some may resent Arjuna for his arrogance & other antics, but at the end of the day regardless of what his motivation was, you got to admit that it's the right move. Basically, ICC should stick to International issues, not domestic ones!

Posted by SSK123 on (September 20, 2008, 18:44 GMT)

This is good for cricket and I am glad that an administrator like Lalit Modi doesn't make decisions that hurt cricket. Moreoever, I maybe blinded but I would pick the intentions of the greatest sportsman India has ever produced - Kapil Dev. All this looks eerily similar to the AFL - NFL scenario back in the 60s in America - Superbowl was the outcome. Let's hope more boards get independent and not get swayed by an ugly BCCI.

Posted by TwitterJitter on (September 20, 2008, 15:24 GMT)

I completely agree with SaiBhaskar with what will happen if ICC lifts the ban on ICL. BCCI will reorganize itself and only focus on franchise cricket throughout the year in all formats. They might enter into an agreement with South Africa and Australia via a revenue sharing scheme for making their players available and don't play any other countries at all or just ask the franchises to release their worst players to play these international tournaments. Cricket will only be played in India throughout the year. It becomes like a NBA/NFL/MLB. People from other countries can't complain because they were okay with sending their players to ICL without a ban. Heck, they might do away with needing NOCs from boards. ICCs revenues will drop more than 50-60%. It looks like that is where this is heading. Ban was not sustainable. Letting players play also was not economically sustainable as BCCI would not like to sit idle and let private leagues eat into profits. So, I predict this will happen.

Posted by TwitterJitter on (September 20, 2008, 14:48 GMT)

i) Note that ICL is only investing in the most lucrative format, T20, and not in 3-4 day domestic tournaments like Ranji's where there is no revenue, but which is essential for developing players. ICL is jut poaching these players that BCCI built, meaning they don't have any costs incurred in actually grooming and devloping talent. j) BCCI will not want to loose ad revenues to ICL (if countries lift the ban and send their best players) and they will surely increase their franchises to 12 and play for 6 months in an year. They will send their B and C teams for international tournaments because they will make much more money with IPL for 6 months. k) They will almost surely not play SL and tell SL players that they can come and join IPL without any NOCs from the board. l) Remember, 80% of the ICC revenues are from India. If India is not showing any interest in international tournaments, ICC will get 20million dollars for a tournament instead of 100 million. cont'd..

Posted by TwitterJitter on (September 20, 2008, 14:42 GMT)

cont'd.. e) People are now saying that ICL players can only play in domestic tournaments, not international. How long will it hold?The moment international players see that they are earning less than domestic players who are playing in these leagues, they won't want to play international tournament anymore, especially in countries like SL, NZ, WI etc. f) At the moment, 80% of the revenues of ICC come from India. If channels own their leagues, demand for ICC will not be there and every other country save England and may be Australia will be destroyed. g) Curse BCCI what you may, they were restrained with IPL (only 6-7 weeks) at the moment because they are listening to other countries in ICC and did not want to eat up the calendar. h)Now if other countries follow SL and remove the ban on ICL, ICL will almost surely increase the length of the tournaments to a few months. cont'd..

Posted by TwitterJitter on (September 20, 2008, 14:34 GMT)

I think all the people on this board who are thanking SriLanka for letting ICL players play in their domestic tournaments really have not thought through this process. This would kill cricket as we know it. Here are the drawbacks of letting ICC back ICL. a) If ICL (Zee Television sponsored) league is authorized by ICC, other television channels like Star Sports, ESPN, and others will decide to form their own leagues are fill up their channels while making profit instead of buying sponsorship for ICC sponsored leagues. As a result the demand for ICC sponsored events will go down. b) There will be 5 or 6 world championships per year - one per channel sponsored league, all in T20 format at that. c) There will be 3 or 4 Chennai, Mumbai, Kolkata teams one for each channel. d) All the cricket in the world will happen in India and except England, the rest of the countries can forget about having their cricket matches - their players will be sucked into one of these leagues. .. cont'd.

Posted by StJohn on (September 20, 2008, 11:31 GMT)

The ICL is roughly analogous to Kerry Packer's World Series, with national Boards, perhaps understandably, unwilling to lose control over, & revenue from, their domestic cricket. But the distinction between IPL & ICL seems a bit pointless, and it seems anathema to free enterprise and cricketers' ability to choose how they want to ply their trade. Co-operation & inclusiveness are generally more effective than ostracism, exclusion & sanctions in most spheres of life, & I see no reason why cricket should be any different: the ICL is there & the BCCI throwing its toys out of the pram about it has not changed that fact. Better then to embrace reality & work with the ICL than ineffectively to try to shut it out & exclude it. The Sri Lankan Board's move is a small victory for commonsense & logic. I hope other Boards follow suit. On a more general note, I find the BCCI's disproportionate influence over world cricket, e.g. the recent Zimbabwe/ICC fiasco & lack of moral leadership, disturbing.

Posted by flashbackto96 on (September 20, 2008, 9:51 GMT)

contd..hence it cuts both ways.some analogies(all analogies being inexact)if india is a democratic country why do police resort to baton charge,tear gas shelling..presumptously when things go out of if there is some control/damage control steps which are harsh it has to be taken which for a control board is to exercise the right of choosing which player can play for the country or in the tournaments that it has.asking other boards to support it is for the benefit of the other boards as well,if as the BCCI is dictatorial and still has a problem in its hands,the problem would be magnified many times more if the other "softer boards" may have in times going forward.i watch icl for guys who had the promise but cud not make it big or whose days of glory are over but still play for the love of it..but dislike if they paint a picture of being given a raw deal..u have chosen the deal urself,make ur life secure,use ur xpertise to groom young players and forget playing for ur country

Posted by flashbackto96 on (September 20, 2008, 9:29 GMT)

While there is a lot of BCCI bashing and the "strong character" of SCC to stand up to it,a point to be noted is that such a step by one board and if any followed by others would lead to a pandora's box being opened.i do not think that BCCI has the right to decide which player should play in which league but it has the right to decide which player plays for the country and it is inherent in such a right that a player that does not play in its approved league cannot.else there is no need for a cricket control board. u cud have "n" no of leagues funded by corporates blossoming in all countries and at the end u wud not have any measure of selecting who plays for the country.players have a right to decide how best to use their careers.if they see no hope of playing for the country due to any reason whatsoever, sheer bad luck,politics,timing etc and take a decision to make some money that's it..he now has an option to go to a rebel league,but it shud not give him a choice of being in 2 boats

Posted by WhiteOwl on (September 20, 2008, 7:04 GMT)

Look the move take by SLC is the first of many - pretty soon other boards will be removing bans. this cant go on for long - i mean im from South Africa, bloemfontein to be more specific. Thanks to the ICL ban, the Diamond Eagles have lost out on Johan vd Wath - a great player. What im posing is why cant the ICL and IPL coexist - it would be great somewhere down the line, if there was a game featuring an IPL All Stars XI vs ICL All Stars XI. If these two leagues merged we could have leagues based on regions such as the American and National Leagues in Major League Baseball in USA? Wishful thinking on my part,ey?

Posted by drinks.break on (September 20, 2008, 6:40 GMT)

I think it's fanstastic that Sri Lanka has made the first move, because if Australia, England or SA had been the first, then some elements in the BCCI would just have claimed that this was the arrogant West trying to bully the East all over again. Now the ball's in the ECB, SACB and CA's court. Will they make similar statements? And then will they all (together with SLC) lift the ban on ICL players representing their countries? Would the BCCI really try to enforce a ban, when that would mean shutting themselves out of competing against the top 4 sides in the world?

One more thing ... I think the ICL could help force a resolution by promising a proportion of the profits to the foreign boards that authorise their players both to compete in the ICL and to play for their country. If they did that, then you might see boards banning anyone who played in the IPL :) Money talks!

Posted by Khem on (September 20, 2008, 6:32 GMT)

Good decision by SL board. A win-win for cricket and players.

Posted by afrison on (September 20, 2008, 4:47 GMT)

BCCI is the biggest and strongest musle in the cricketing feternity...I dont understand why they are kicking on the stomach of almost those players playing for ICL and are retired on national levels...if BCCI have guts than let them produce something to over shadow the ICL games but not by using their musle as big boss....ICC have supported this ban why???

IPL tournament is great and was popular so why worry... SLC have done right to allow their players to play ICL and its pity Bangladesh have banned thier players ...probaly the youngest and up coming team ...why disallow if they can earn their bread and butter more or less and this could only be the source..Lets play the cards FAIR

Posted by Subra on (September 20, 2008, 1:26 GMT)

Harish & cricamateur, I acknowledge the fact that in a democratic setup you are entitled to your views and I will be the first to fight for your rights - even if I think that you are wrong. Having said that why should BCCI in a country that practices democracy tothe hilt - allowing tens of political parties, thousands of opinions have the sole right to determine who plays for which league. Come on - the days when Indians were faced with the choice of Ambassador cars or nothing else are gone. It is a pity that in an emerging and effervescent India, the BCCI still plays dictator. The days when dictators ruled the earth are gone. Wake up, let cricketers chose, as long as they give priority to play for their National Team (if selected) they should be allowed to play for any league anywhere in the world. Far too long the Boards have treated cricketers as their bonded slaves forgetting that we are now in the 20th century. R Sivasubramaniam, Singapore

Posted by Saibaskar on (September 20, 2008, 1:23 GMT)

I think BCCI did not flex the IPL muscle entirely. IPL has the potential of having atleast 14 teams and can be played in all forms of the game for atleast 6 months period. A test match involving Delhi and Bangalore would have been an excellent idea pitting the likes of Kallis and Dravid against McGrath and Asif. IPL was constrained to be only a 20/20 tournament for a month so that International Cricket is unhindered. I don't say it is because of noble motive of BCCI that this happened but because international cricket is still yearning good money for BCCI. Now, if international boards go around courting the rebel league then IPL which has more corporates at stake will look at increasing its profits which will directly impact international cricket. ICL is a league which is not under the control of anybody. When such a league succeeds and becomes hard-nosed then that will be the end of international cricket and moreover if ICL succeeds then watchout for more channels joining race

Posted by DwightR on (September 20, 2008, 0:05 GMT)

well done to the SLC and Arujuna for making and backing the decision, the BCCI has no right to ban ICL players simply to drive the league out of business to increase the profits of the IPL, there is a reason Sri Lanka won the spirit of cricket award and this decision shows why they earn it

Posted by billroseq8 on (September 19, 2008, 23:33 GMT)

It is a logical and a wise decision by Sri Lankan Board to lift the ban on ICL players. Cricketers should have a choice to play for ICL or IPL and allowed to play for their national team or any county team. BCCI should be democratic and not enforce their diktats on the ICC and other national cricket boards. ICC should oversee that the games are played fairly without any match-fixing or doping. Wake up BCCI and ICC, we are in the 21st Century now.

Posted by maruti123 on (September 19, 2008, 23:14 GMT)

Harish 8207 there is nothing wrong in playing for ICL or the IPL. It is cricket afer all.What is wrong if the cricketers earn some money they are not doing something illegal they are playing cricket. .But having said that your country has to come 1st before IPL or ICL. Players should be allowed to take part as long as it does not clash with there international appointments that is to represent there country. I think it was a great decision by Arjuna Ranthunga and the Srilankan board to lift the ban .

Another point i want to let Harish 8207 know is that Arjuna Ranathunga has been the one of the greatest cricketers the subcontinent produced and he was the 1st person who stood up and challenged the Aussies.If he did not do that we from the subcontinent will be trambelled by the Aussies.

Posted by Rukicee on (September 19, 2008, 23:08 GMT)

Good stuff SLC! How can you possibly ban someone like Marvan, Russell etc.. These guys are Gold mate...!

Posted by whocareswhowins on (September 19, 2008, 22:28 GMT)

I happen to be an Indian supporter. But I have to say that the super-inflated egos of the BCCI administrators and their attitude towards the ICL are harming the careers of many cricketers. The SLC Board have taken a bold ( and wise ) step and they deserve to be praised for this. Well done, Sri Lanka Cricket !

Posted by Anandacool on (September 19, 2008, 21:43 GMT)

I just want to ask one question......Why should rest of the world's cricket boards and players be suffering just because BCCI president Niranjan Shah and Lolit Modi has some ego problems with the ICL officials??? Well.....I dont really think there is any answer for that...ICL is playing exact same cricket as IPL and ICC are organizing....ICL is not trying to change the game as it is and cricket has been playing at the right spirit as well...Thumbs up to the SCL who is first to step ahead and take the right decesion.

Posted by cricamateur on (September 19, 2008, 21:31 GMT)

Knowing Ranatunga's agressive, arrogant, ungrateful and arm-twisting tactics, I do not think he has any such lofty ideals at all, but having filled his begging bowl from the BCCI's coffers, he has gone completely volte face now...he is trying to show the world how courageous he is, and how he has guts enough to take on the strongest and richest cricketing body. He is just not to be trusted.

Posted by cricamateur on (September 19, 2008, 21:26 GMT)

There are two issues here. Firstly, BCCI should not bully or ban other cricketing bodies through money or political power (such as Powar), but earn the respect of everyone by their sole dedication and contribution to infrastructure and talent. The second issue is how revenues from ICL and and IPL are used. Despite what Kapil Dev claims, ICL's revenues go entirely to their capitalist coffers, and not towards development of infrastructure or young talent. What needs to be done is to eliminate all political and profit-seeking people from these bodies-or better still a unified body. They should then involve genuine sports people whose sole intention is not to make a quick buck or earn some cheap fame as a sprignboard to further their ambitions, but to develop the sport and encourage young players with vision, passion and missionary zeal; all net proceeds from events should be wisely earmarked and expended towards achieving this vision.

Posted by anmn on (September 19, 2008, 20:43 GMT)

I support the decision very much. I hope one day ICL and IPL dominate the world cricket sports.

Niranjan Shah has used the words "issue of unauthorised cricket". That is despicable. Its quite clear BCCI , ICC and IPL are into the business of money making. Why do they use our national patriotism to achieve their means of making money? Indian Government should step in to prevent BCCI, IPL monopoly and make them to compete on even ground.

BCCI, IPL and Lalit Modi are engaging in unethical business practices and should be prosecuted as such, to make an example, as India enters into a new economic era.

Posted by Srinath on (September 19, 2008, 19:45 GMT)

Ah, finally some fight against the BCCI. It was totally illogical on BBCI s part to prevent ICL from running. Infact ICL only made the cash rich IPL to be born(even though BCCI claims this plan was in place more than 10 yrs agao). Otherwise we wouldn have dreamed of such a league. As for the fact, how would one define the term unauthorised cricket?? Infact the multi billion dollar stanford 20 20 should also be termed unauthorised. Can ICC pose a ban on them?

Posted by kingsden on (September 19, 2008, 19:11 GMT)

GREAT GOING SLC.....finally someone showed the guts to slap BCCI...i am an indian and i am strongly against the politics of BCCI who think that no one has the guts to stand against should not be ruled by the egotistical stand of some persons or a particular board....everybody r free to play d game....if IPL is authorised then why is ICL unauthorised??....i am also against the decision taken by BCB, what problem do they have if their young players get a chance to play alongside legends like lara,cairns,inzamam..they get international exposure and it is good for bangladesh cricket.

Posted by pizzaboy on (September 19, 2008, 18:30 GMT)

Welldone Sri lanka!!. you have shown to world that cricket is the final winner. This should teach BCCI a lesson and I hope all other boards will follow SLC soon. This is good news and what can I say cricket as a game has the final say. It is easy for BCCI to ban ICL cricketers as India has lot of bench strength and they can give dikats to players and through money to other boards. But the other boards are failing to understand that they don't have bench strength to survive in the long term. My advise to all boards to remove ban on ICL players and provide good quality and exciting cricket for all cricket lovers.

Posted by got_cricket on (September 19, 2008, 18:27 GMT)

Great Job SLC!!! The BCCI and Lalit Modi needs some-one to stand upto them and tell that they can not monopolize the game.

BCCI's high-handedness in this whole episode and CA, PCB, CSA's tip-toeing of BCCI's stance has been a shame.....

Posted by Philip_Gnana on (September 19, 2008, 18:26 GMT)

Bravo SLC. We cannot have a monopoly of the gentlemen's game. The ECB was not allowed to ban the players from playing for their counties due to legal reasons. And hence the players being able to play for their counties. I hope all the boards recognise that you cannot deprive cricketers from their livelihood.

How many of the cricket's governing national boards have a strong and proven leader? None. And neither does the ICC. We see the BICC whipping all and sundry - money talks? Does not have too now. Dont let it talk.

Well done SLC and Arjuna Ranatunga.

Philp Gnana, New Malden, Surrey

Posted by justjonty on (September 19, 2008, 18:12 GMT)

At last a board has shown some spine. World cricket should not be ruled by the whim's of one man- Lalit Modi. He is currently the person who is most dangerous to Indian Cricket and world cricket. First step in the right direction. Start playing these people in international cricket. And snub the BCCI. Ranatunga, are you listening???

Posted by Leoline on (September 19, 2008, 18:12 GMT)

See, we need to understand that the only body that loses out if ICL is legitimized is BCCI. Players will have more options than IPL and since ICL is not controlled by BCCI it might result in lesser number of players playing IPL which might drive the IPL earnings for BCCI down. Since BCCI does not share the IPl revenue with anyone else, nobody will be affected if ICL is welcomed. BCCI's defensive stand on the issue clearly showcases its lack of competitiveness. Tomorrow if I organize a cricket tournament in my colony and my uncle who plays cricket for India participates, will BCCI ban him as well? The problem is that BCCI is being run by politicians and businessmen, and we all know what they will opt between moolah and the development of the sport.

In my opinion, the solution is that ICC cracks the whip on BCCI, accepts ICL players back, centrally organizes Twenty 20 tournaments, and distributes the proceeds to all member boards.

Posted by jedjfdp on (September 19, 2008, 18:01 GMT)

SCL board (Ranatunga) made an admirable decision. Players should be able to choose who they play for. I would like the boards getting a share from these tournaments as they are lending players to play in these tournament.

Posted by Khem on (September 19, 2008, 17:58 GMT)

ICL was the first to come with 20-20 and this is an idea whose time has come. I am remembering a quote from Gandhiji

"First they ignore you, then they laugh at you, then they fight you, then you win"

so as you can see BCCI is already at stage 3. ICL keep it up one few steps left before you overcome these money mongers sitting in BCCI and trying to dictate terms to the cricketing world.

SLC is the beginning, sooner every board will join them. BCCI's dictatorship should be overthrown and cricket should be played like a sport as it has been in the past.

Posted by Indianmaster on (September 19, 2008, 17:55 GMT)

It's the cricket Stupid!!!!

Sports are played to be social and competitive. not to beat down one another. BCCI has taken the stand to 'rule' the cricket. That's so insane. This is an entertainment for viewers and competitiveness for players. so why ban.

Rules are made for offensive acts in the cricket, that is good. but don't make the rules who should play and who shouldn't. if a country/county/club us capable of playing then welcome them. The ban is like lagaan time cricket, only brits can play and now india is playing Brits here.


Posted by Kazis_Cricket on (September 19, 2008, 17:10 GMT)

Congratulations to SLC for their gutsy decision! BCCI or even ICC does not have any moral right to dictate against ICL if Cricket is concerned. What is the reason that ICC does not recognize ICL? Is it Cricket or money? Everybody knows of it. If businessmen like Niranjan Shah and Lalit Modi can be entrusted to work for world Cricket with IPL, Kapil Dev is far ahead for the same with ICL. Unfortunately, the present world runs with no moral but the "might is right". My three salutes to SLC for their bold stand. I hope that ICC will soon realize its wrong stand in this matter and soon come forward to recognize ICL immediately.

Posted by Pesi on (September 19, 2008, 17:10 GMT)

India is democratic country but BCCI acts like a dictator.Since the day it has become rich it has started dictating their terms with all in the world of cricket. It is very unfair to stop player from playing for his country even if he is good enough to get selected for the country. I am realy happy to know that SLC has taken initiative in the right direction and all other boards should follow that. There are some excellent players playing for ICL and it is a great loss to the international cricket lover not to see them in world cricket. Players like Shane Bond are still one of the best in the world. So BCCI ....learn to be democratic . We do not like dictators.

Posted by nahid1024 on (September 19, 2008, 17:00 GMT)

I believe the Sri Lankan board has taken the correct actions versus the knee-jerk action on behalf of BCB. This is a more rational approach. Apparently this doesn't appear to be a BCCI problem but rather some current members who setting the current trend in for the cricket world.

Posted by Harish8207 on (September 19, 2008, 15:22 GMT)

Stupid Decision from SLC.The stupid Arjuna Ranatunga has no sense and has really did a bad decision.ICL(Indian Comedy League!) must be not allowed to Host its matches in India or in the world.It should be banned completely.13 senseless Bangaldeshi players jealous of money went to ICL and are now facing the right ban...

Posted by CricketPissek on (September 19, 2008, 15:07 GMT)

i agree 100% with SLC's decision, but i wonder if it seems a bit ungrateful to the BCCI. SLC was in utter debt, and the BCCI quickly arranged a test and ODI tour which more or less wiped out the debt (which gave us Mendis magic!) after Ranatunga effectively pleaded with them. So although i agree with the decision, i think their timing could have been better. I also don't like Kapil Dev who always made derogatory remarks and was always patronising towards Sri Lanka. But BCCI needs to be taught a lesson, and i'm proud that Sri Lanka is leading from the front :)

Posted by qalandar4 on (September 19, 2008, 14:58 GMT)

As a supporter of the Indian team, I salute SL's decision. The Indian Board's authoritarian attitude in this matter has been disturbing to say the least, and is both petty and cruel.

Posted by AndyBowls on (September 19, 2008, 14:51 GMT)

Very well done.. it has been disgusting all these months to see BCCI urging all boards to ban ICL players/officials and all boards complying to it.

Posted by s_arul on (September 19, 2008, 14:44 GMT)

Good move by SLC. However, I feel there is more to it than meets the eye. My conspiracy theory...currently the SLC and the players are on a stalemate regarding the England tour that conflicts with the IPL. My thinking is that by allowing the ICL players to participate in the domestic circuit, the SLC is betting the BCCI will enforce some sort of restriction on the current IPL recruits from Srilanka. Think about what happened to the counties that allowed ICL players to participate or Indian players who were refused to participate in counties that have ICL players. The BCCI has mentioned they were "Disappointed" with the decision, let waits and see for the final verdict from BCCI. I'm sure (hopefully not) they will come down hard.

Posted by MiHiiR on (September 19, 2008, 14:34 GMT)

Brilliant! This was kind of expected. Hopefully cricket boards around the world would learn a lesson from this. Great going Sri Lanka!

Posted by gorky_s on (September 19, 2008, 13:49 GMT)

Well done SLC! Finally someone showing the guts to stand against the monstruous diktats of BCCI.

From an Indian Cricket Fan.....

Posted by bharathere on (September 19, 2008, 13:45 GMT)

Wow!! This must be the first slap on the face of 'Mad-Rich' BCCI. It's so heartening to see there are boards and their representatives ready to take on BCCI. I always had the feeling that Arjuna Ranatunga never a big fan of IPL and he even advised his players to tour England than participating in the IPL tournament next year. Kudos to everyone at SLC and I hope the other boards follow suit.

Posted by Sundar_Sabhesan on (September 19, 2008, 13:32 GMT)

Bravo SCL. Who gave the authourity to BCCI and its croonie ICC, the right to decide whether the circket is authourized or not. Can anyone throw legal light on whether BCCI has the right to decide the Indian cricket team matters. BCCI is drunk with money and hence their arrogant behaviour.

Posted by smartha_hk on (September 19, 2008, 13:27 GMT)

I am an Indian by nationality and and I really appreciate the stand taken by SLC. They have the guts to stand up and challenge BCCI's monopoly. Other countries should follow the suit and put BCCI in its place. BCCI cannot act this way and be a big brother just because it has loads of money. They have not taken any decision to put that money for the betterment of game. Even ICC is a puppet in BCCI's hands. People like Niranjan Shah and Lalit Modi have not even played highest level of cricket and they go to the extent of ridiculing the stature of people like Kapil Dev. Just bureaucracy. I hate it.

Posted by Dayar on (September 19, 2008, 13:24 GMT)

Excellent decision by SLC. Arjuna showed he has a back bone while he was the captain and now as the head of SLC he do the same. It is about time the world accept the fact that India is not the world cricket authority and not tolerate their dictatorship. What is BCCI afraid of. ICL is another competition and that is good for world cricket. If BCCI truly wants world cricket to progress they should not act against ICL. BCB, PCB, ECB and other cricket boards should follow the example of SLC. Hats off to SLC!

Posted by kisskadee on (September 19, 2008, 13:17 GMT)

Well done! Sri Lanka.

I am from India and I support the Indian team wherever they go. But this banning of cricketers for earning their livelihood by BCCI is utterly ridiculous. Have they committed any crime by joining the ICL?

Instead guys like Mohammed Asif play in the IPL and have all sorts of drug problems. Now, let's look at that angle and see what double standards the BCCI is setting.

Posted by JangBang on (September 19, 2008, 12:48 GMT)

Commendable. I think everyone should stop using the word "rebel" for ICL players. They were the original 20-20 league, IPL was just a copycat, and since BCCI wanted all the money, they banned ICL. Even in ICC, Lalit Modi has a big hand, and unfortunately ICL will still be unofficial.

Posted by AleemCh on (September 19, 2008, 12:42 GMT)

Excellent decsion shoul follow by other boards specially by Pakistan Cricket board because they have lost some special players like Razzaq, Hassan Raza and Azhar Mahmood. Decsion will strengthen ICL's stand

Posted by CbeCricket on (September 19, 2008, 12:30 GMT)

I hope the other cricket boards follow SLC and let ICL players to play domestic cricket. This is a major blow to BCCI.

Posted by sarun108 on (September 19, 2008, 12:24 GMT)

I see words like like "rebel", "illegal" and in the report above "unauthorized" when referring to the ICL. According to whom? So does Cricinfo and it's reporters work for Lalit Modi now? Let us say tomorrow morning Lalit Modi declares Cricinfo unauthorized...what will they do? Roll over and shut down? Shame on you Cricinfo.

Posted by cking on (September 19, 2008, 12:22 GMT)

I don't know what is the big issue of playing for ICL other than bunch of fearful hitlers in BCCI who can't tolerate someone emerging as a bigger body in cricket in India. Cricket can never be unauthorized it is a sport and treat it like that stop playing dirty politics if anything it is bringing up new talent for all the countries. Banning ICL is similar as if whole of Bollywood movie industry bans reality shows and call that new emerging talent unauthorised but we all know how much talent those shows has produced so why not cricket.For me hats off to Kapil Dev man has done everything for cricket and nothing else and one word for BCCI dectators GROW UP.

Posted by Ravs443 on (September 19, 2008, 12:11 GMT)

This is brilliant news. All the other countries association should follow suit. World wide cricket cannot run on the whims and fancy of BCCI.

Well done Sri Lankan Cricket.

Posted by PankajJain on (September 19, 2008, 12:01 GMT)

Well done Sri Lanka. All credit to Duleep Mendis & Arjuna Ranatunga. The Sri Lankan board highlights the importance of running the board by crickets and not by politicians. The experience of players like Atapattu will be invaluable to the younger players and only Duleep and Arjuna knowns that very well. Once again well done Duleep and Arjuna for standing up to bullying Mr Modi & company and showing ways to other boards - how to run the cricket board.

Posted by LITT on (September 19, 2008, 11:44 GMT)

Excellent step by SLC. other boards should also do the same. Thats the solution to all the problems related to ICL. ICL is not doing anything wrong.

Posted by Dubby49 on (September 19, 2008, 11:28 GMT)

Cheers. At last someone has the guts to tell the BCCI where they can get off.

Perhaps Cricinfo can give us a short brief on how it is legal in some countries to interfere with a players employment. If it is not OK to impose such a ban in UK how is it OK in other countries.

And as for banning players with ICL links from International squads - I thought the days of one country dictating to another who could or could not be selected went out out with Basil Doliviera.

When will the day come when countries act on what is right and not the way big brother with the purse strings tells them to.

Once more - let's hear it for Sri Lanka.

For compaddict - More competition improves standards, not drives them down. No one will pay good money to watch sub standard leagues. Ultimately the best will rise to the top and collect the big bucks.

Posted by LGD3 on (September 19, 2008, 11:03 GMT)

This is very heartening news! Three cheers for Sri Lanka Cricket! Hip-hip: Hooray! Hip-hip: Hooray! Hip-hip: Hooray!

Posted by ridoy on (September 19, 2008, 11:02 GMT)

SLC has proved that they have backbone.well done SLC.go ahead.

Posted by Jagannadh on (September 19, 2008, 10:30 GMT)

Excellent decision by the Srilankan cricket board.

Posted by joe_antony on (September 19, 2008, 10:20 GMT)

SLC has acted as if it has back bone... ICC should not create any problems for SLC for this... but for sure BCCI will try to put some pressure on SLC via ICC

Posted by Subra on (September 19, 2008, 10:15 GMT)

Well done SLC - as one who learnt to play the game in what was then called Ceylon and the values of the game drummed in by a 'cricket-mad' teacher, I am proud that the same sense of fair play is still applied.

A lot of good will come when players like Marvan, Upul, Russell play with upcoming youngsters and pass on the skills and traditions of the game aqnd the sense of Fair Play. Speaking of which it is nice that Sri Lanka won the Spirit of the Game award again!

Though I don't play anymore, had the pleasure of watching Russell play in Singapore.

I hope the other boards are brave enough not to be cowed by the Big Bully and that these cricketers who have to earn a living will be allowed to play even in the International Stage, if their performances warrant.

R Sivasubramaniam, now limited to watching Sri Lanka play on Starhub

Posted by ABP235 on (September 19, 2008, 10:14 GMT)

Cricket wins, yes. thank you Duleep Mendis, thank you Arjuna Ranatunga as well, the sports minister. Its plain rubbish of BCCI to expect every one to be cowed down by its big brother status. England has already allowed them to play domestic cricket, I am surprised that Australia, NZ and South Africa being more professional in their cricket administration, have not done this already. SL board has shown them the way. Come on guys, play the bluff on BCCI. We want to see tournaments happening all over the world with every cricketer worth his salt playing them. Will BCCI be able to accommodate everyone from Bangadesh and SL and even other countries, to play in its IPL? then why is it jealous about ICL - just because they started it first and BCCI only followed suit like a copycat?

Posted by ladycricfan on (September 19, 2008, 10:11 GMT)

Why the "ban" necessary? Because it acts as a deterrant. Imagine if the millionaires and media barons out there feel free to create their own leagues. The talent will be diluted and the quality of cricket will go down. Why Australians are no1 in the world? They have only 6 teams in domestic competitions, the cream of the talent compete with each other and develop into supreme cricketers. Do you want quality or quantity?

Posted by Raman01 on (September 19, 2008, 10:06 GMT)

Better sense finally prevailed, atleast for SLC. A player of Attapattu's stature shouldn't be ostracized by their own country men, that too at the behest of an outside terrorist body BCCI.

Posted by Iftekharul_Hasan_Siam on (September 19, 2008, 10:02 GMT)

Bangladesh should follow them.BCB should ban their cricketer's 10yr only from the national team.And should allow them to play in the domestic league.BCB should respect players like Mohammad Rafique & Habibul Bashar.Who have unforgetable memories for the team.

Posted by Patrick_Clarke on (September 19, 2008, 9:57 GMT)

At last a big step in the right direction. It's time the BCCI was told it does not run world cricket - any organisation which is willing to share the same bed as Robert Mugabe's ZANU-PF regime purely for amoral, tactical reasons is totally discredited in the eyes of all right thinking people worldwide.

Perhaps now the ECB will find some spine. If the BCCI continue to block Kent from playing in the so-called Champions League then set up a rival one involving the two English 20/20 finalists, the top two Stanford 20/20 finalists and the top two ICL finalists plus any other country which is sick of the BCCI's attempt to take over world cricket.

Why should sanctions be applied against ICL players in England when the ICL does not run tournaments at the same time as the English season, unlike the IPL which is a direct threat as evidenced by its inducements to get players with English county contracts to break them and sign for the IPL.

Posted by Batsnumbereleven on (September 19, 2008, 9:53 GMT)

So if a national board doesn't sanction something, it's now "unauthorised" cricket? Give me a break. If the ICC had any cojones they would stand up to the BCCI and tell them to get over the fact that the ICL got there first. but at the moment, all the national boards seem to be caving to the BCCI.

This is a good start and statement of intent by Sri Lanka Cricket, but they need to go further and state that the ICL "rebels" are fully entitled to play for their country as well as participating in the ICL.

Posted by Katri on (September 19, 2008, 9:51 GMT)

The SLC decision highlights the advantage of having a cricketer run a cricket board. Duleep Mendis must be applauded for his pro-active leadership and I hope it emboldens other cricket boards to stand up to the BCCI. The news is especially refreshing considering BCB's recent (expectedly) meek capitulation to BCCI pressure.

Posted by ppramesh on (September 19, 2008, 9:42 GMT)

i think Bangladesh Cricket Board had took a bad decision. They have to use ICL experience in International match. Their International standard is poor. They can found lot of money from ICL n they can contribution for Bangladesh.

Posted by Dreamweaver on (September 19, 2008, 9:17 GMT)

This is a courageous act by SLC, and could have only been accomplished under someone as uncompromisngly brave as Arjuna Ranatunga.The peevishness and egoistic attitude of the IPL comisioner,Lalit Modi has got to be stopped;there is room for an alternative reality.

I hope more boards will follow suit and put the arrogant BCCI in its place.As Kapil Paaji said what if you unearth talent in ICL to compare with the IPL?How long will you stop them?

I think the Indian Public should vote with their feet and throng to the ICL matches as well.Good job SLC and well done.The 700 pound Gorilla has been shown up.

Posted by nkhlss on (September 19, 2008, 9:13 GMT)

i think this is a very good move by SLC. I was wondering for so days how come other Cricket boards are ready lose out on their star players like Bond for NZC. We were missing out on players like Bond, Attapatu and many more. I think now ICC should start using their brains instead of BCCI's. Well done SLC, other boards all over international circuit should take a leap out of SLC's book!

Posted by Orawiz on (September 19, 2008, 9:01 GMT)

BCCI have gone crazy. When the SLC is clearly stating that the players will play for the Clubs only and will not be selected for the National team. Still BCCI want to refer this to the ICC. Hope the ICC have some sense. Well done SLC and Mendis. Hope other cricketing bodies start lifting the Ban.

Posted by Overdrive on (September 19, 2008, 8:43 GMT)

Finalllly some common sense! This is a positive move from SLC. Cricket or for that matter any sport should be used to break the barriers of politics and not fold to the ridicules of Monopoly games!

Posted by ushasree on (September 19, 2008, 8:39 GMT)

This is good move from SLC. Having Marvan Atapattu, the former Sri Lanka captain, Russel Arnold, Upul Chandana, Avishka Gunawardene playing for the Local Domestic match would be useful for young player and their respective team, Maravan can share his valuable experience to youngster. Right decision always make sensible approach.

Posted by Capricorn60 on (September 19, 2008, 8:00 GMT)

Well done Duleep Mendis & the SLC Board for having the courage to stand up for their independence and not allow themselves to be bullied by the autocratic & monopolistic BCCI. I hope SLC will in due course allow these ICL players to again represent Sri Lanka if they deserve to be chosen. Players like Atapattu Atapattu have contributed greatly to Sri Lankan cricket and they don't deserve to be denigrated & ostracized, especially now in the twilight of their careers. I hope the spineless BCB will take note of this & put an immediate stop their current slagging of their players like Bashar for joining the ICL. I am a fanatical Indian fan but I would applaud anyone who has the courage & guts to stand up to the bullying Mr Lalit Modi & the BCCI, who just continually abuse their financial clout to the detriment of the game internationally.

Posted by dadvoc on (September 19, 2008, 7:50 GMT)

Now let's see what will ICC and BCCI do. Are they going to ban Sri Lankan Cricket Board too... :D

Posted by bonaku on (September 19, 2008, 7:23 GMT)

Cricket won the battle at last. It is a very good and sensible decision by Sri Lanka. In reality SLC in not getting any money from the IPL, So there is no sense in banning the player from playing in other leagues of similar kind. Hope BCB and Newzeland Cricket board will follow the same path. Bring back BOND to the national team would be nice thing.

Comments have now been closed for this article

Email Feedback Print
Sa'adi ThawfeeqClose
Country Fixtures Country Results
1st Test: New Zealand v Sri Lanka at Christchurch
Dec 26-30, 2014 (11:00 local | 22:00 GMT | 17:00 EST | 16:00 CST | 14:00 PST)
2nd Test: New Zealand v Sri Lanka at Wellington
Jan 3-7, 2015 (11:00 local | 22:00 GMT | 17:00 EST | 16:00 CST | 14:00 PST)
Group A: Colts v Ragama at Colombo (Colts)
Jan 9-11, 2015 (10:00 local | 04:30 GMT | 23:30 EST | 22:30 CST | 20:30 PST)
Group B: Moors v SLPACC at Colombo (Moors)
Jan 9-11, 2015 (10:00 local | 04:30 GMT | 23:30 EST | 22:30 CST | 20:30 PST)
Group A: Nondescripts v SL Air SC at Colombo (NCC)
Jan 9-11, 2015 (10:00 local | 04:30 GMT | 23:30 EST | 22:30 CST | 20:30 PST)
Group B: Sinhalese v Chilaw at Colombo (SSC)
Jan 9-11, 2015 (10:00 local | 04:30 GMT | 23:30 EST | 22:30 CST | 20:30 PST)
Group B: SL Army v Col CC at Panagoda
Jan 9-11, 2015 (10:00 local | 04:30 GMT | 23:30 EST | 22:30 CST | 20:30 PST)
Group A: Tamil Union v Bloomfield at Colombo (PSS)
Jan 9-11, 2015 (10:00 local | 04:30 GMT | 23:30 EST | 22:30 CST | 20:30 PST)
1st ODI: Pak Women v SL Women at Sharjah
Jan 9, 2015 ()
Complete fixtures » | Download Fixtures »
News | Features Last 3 days
News | Features Last 3 days