ICC Plans BCCI Meet With an Eye on Weakening I…

New Delhi: The International Cricket Council (ICC) is planning to meet the Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) office-bearers and the Supreme Court-appointed Committee of Administrators in the Capital on Thursday. 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.

As per the strengths, weaknesses, opportunities and threats that the ICC is planning to discuss, a copy of which is in possession of CricketNext, topping the list is 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.”

The ICC says that the SWOT analysis for world cricket has been prepared based on discussions during board meetings and meetings or workshops with other stakeholders (players, fans, commercial partners, broadcasters) and areas or issues that have been highlighted during formulation of various internal sub-strategies. The ICC senior management staff spent time working on the analysis and also had inputs from other ICC staff. The world body believes that the SWOT will help identify the internal factors — things that are within their control — and external factors — things beyond ICC’s control.

Interestingly, in the threats section, ICC mentions shortening of attention spans and how events like T10 are coming up. They also talk about the competition increasing from other sports like football. It also talks about the threat from other forms of entertainment like music and television etc and the lack of competitive tension in the broadcast markets.

It will be interesting to see how the BCCI officials react to the meeting that is aimed at clearly justifying an attempt to weaken the Indian board’s position on the cricketing map.