The Indian team management has withdrawn Sachin Tendulkar and Dinesh Karthik from Friday's Masters Twenty20 match in Wellington because they would have played alongside Hamish Marshall, the former New Zealand batsman who featured in the unauthorised ICL last year.
Tendulkar was to turn out for the New Zealand Cricket Players' Association (NZCPA) while Karthik was to play for the Australian Cricketers' Association (ACA) Masters in a game billed as a curtain-raiser to the second Twenty20 between India and New Zealand later on Friday.
Marshall, who played for the Royal Bengal Tigers in the ICL, was part of the NZCPA squad.
The BCCI has shunned official contact with ICL players and last year, refused to let VVS Laxman appear for Nottinghamshire because the county had ICL players in its ranks. The Indian board banned players associated with the unsanctioned league from all forms of official cricket and barred them from using any of its facilities. The BCCI also used its influence within the ICC to ensure that other national boards banned ICL cricketers and officials alike.
Heath Mills, the New Zealand Players' Asscoiation chief, called the whole business "a bit silly" and said the BCCI had known of the team make-up beforehand. "When I learnt about the BCCI's decision from Justin Vaughan, the CEO of New Zealand Cricket, I went back and tried to find a solution by explaining that Hamish is no longer an ICL player and we want him to play [in the match]," Mills said. However an ICL official told Cricinfo that Marshall was still contracted to the league.
"I was hoping for a change in their position but I understand I would have to speak to the right people in Mumbai and so we had to run with their decision last night.
Mills claimed Marshall was no longer a contracted player with the ICL and said his omission from the match was never considered as an option. He further called for the ICC and BCCI to resolve the ICL issue, which he said was depriving the international game of big stars like Shane Bond.