BCCI Sees Red as ICC Plans to Further Reduce I…

New Delhi: The ICC is planning to meet the BCCI officials in the Capital on Thursday and going by the SWOT analysis prepared by the ICC — as part of the global strategy — the world body plans to further cut down India’s financial position in world cricket. And the move hasn’t gone down too well with the members of the BCCI.

The members had a conference call on Wednesday evening and felt the need to discuss these issues of policy and take appropriate decisions in this regard at the general meeting.

“Representatives of 18 full members of the BCCI had a conference call this evening. The members of the BCCI have been observing certain developments at the ICC over the past year and a half. One such development being the shape being given to the outline of the global strategy for cricket which lists the heavy dependence on the Indian fans and revenues as a weakness and laments the lack of aggressive growth strategy to counter over – reliance on India.

“Thus, the intent with regard to India is apparent. The decision to convert the Champions Trophy into a World T20 event is another such recent development. The members took a dim view of these developments and were of the view that the BCCI as an organisation would necessarily need to discuss these issues of policy and take appropriate decisions in this regard at a general meeting. Consideration of and deliberations on the proposed member participation agreement with the ICC would also be undertaken to safeguard the BCCI’s interest before the same is executed on behalf of the BCCI, in lines with an earlier decision of the general body of the BCCI,” a statement from the board said.

The SWOT analysis that the ICC is planning to discuss with the BCCI officials lists their concern over the heavy dependence for revenues on India. Having accepted their dependence, the world body then points at the need to counter the over-reliance on India and brings up the high disparity in distribution of world cricket income. Clearly, the world body is still not done with reworking the financial revenue model of the ICC under current chairman Shashank Manohar.

Speaking to CricketNext, a senior BCCI official said: “The SWOT analysis of the ICC is farcical. It is as if it has been prepared in the full knowledge that there is an elephant in the room but with the intent of ignoring the pachyderm. They have categorised the dependence on revenue and fans from India as a weakness and the ICC has repeatedly taken steps to malign the BCCI. This speaks volumes about the ICC leadership, which appears to be the biggest weakness and threat for the ICC. The fact that this process is being undertaken under the chairmanship of Shashank Manohar is quite telling of the state of affairs. If the ICC directors decide to continue with Manohar as the chairman, they may have to add his leadership as the number 1 weakness and the biggest threat for the organisation.

“The dependence on revenue and fans from India cannot be countered by weakening the BCCI and acting in haste while the BCCI is weakened, a failure to recognize this is also a very big internal threat for the ICC. If the dependence of India is a weakness, then are the ICC representatives coming to find ways to weaken India further is the big question.”

Earlier, the ICC after its last meeting in Kolkata decided to replace the 50-over Champions Trophy with a World T20. With a World T20 already planned for 2020 in Australia, the move came as a big shock as having another T20 tournament in less than a year’s gap would not only mean repetition for the fans, but also when it comes to the financial side of a multi-nation event, it would cost the BCCI heavily.