BCCI Loses Revenue, Governance Votes

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Mumbai: The Board of Control for Cricket in India’s hegemony in world cricket was severely undermined after it was comprehensively out-voted on governance structure and revenue model at an International Cricket Council board meeting in Dubai on Wednesday.

The BCCI was routed 1-9 when representatives of all other member nations, except its representative Amitabh Chaudhary, voted in favour of a change in the governance structure.

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Their opposition to change of the revenue model was also rejected 8-2 by the ICC board with Chaudhary only finding support from Sri Lanka Cricket’s Thilanga Sumathipala. The BCCI was opposed to the changes on two counts — ICC’s governance model, which required a change in its constitution with review of full membership, and a two-tier Test structure.

The bigger issue was the contentious revenue model, which is set to bring India’s share down to half from $570 million. Former BCCI chief Shashank Manohar, now ICC’s first independent chairman, has advocated a more equitable distribution of revenue. Earlier India, Australia and England, nicknamed ‘Big Three’, were the primary earners. “Yes, the voting is over.

It was 8-2 in favour of revamped revenue model and 9-1 in favour of constitutional changes,” a senior BCCI functionary present in Dubai said. “The BCCI has voted against both as we had, in principle, maintained that these changes are completely unacceptable for us. At this point, we can only say that all options are open for us. We will have to go back to our SGM and apprise members of the situation,” he added.

The ICC has offered the BCCI a $290 million revenue model, a cut of $280 million from the $570 million India had been getting till last year. The ICC also offered an additional $100 million pay-out, which the BCCI has rejected outright. A senior BCCI official said they expected resistance from Manohar but were surprised by Zimbabwe and Bangladesh’s decisions to vote against India. The BCCI believed they were assured of those two votes.

The defeat in vote is also an embarrassment for the Committee of Administrators as it was extremely confident of retaining India’s dominance. The heavy defeat indicated the COA’s failure to convince the other member nations of persisting with the existing structure.
“Zimbabwe have been promised $19 million by the ICC. On what grounds has Manohar made this promise? But strangely Bangladesh also went the other way.

“Today at the meeting, Manohar, in fact, said the $290 million was a ‘take it or leave it’ offer,” the BCCI official added. “Now at the SGM, there were only two resolutions passed. Our representative had two mandates. Propose for deferment of the decision, which was rejected. And the next option was voting against during a floor Test. “Our aim was to protect India’s interest. Our tone was extremely conciliatory at the meeting for the best interest of the game. But what was shocking was Mr Manohar’s stance,” the official claimed.

Asked about whether India will now withdraw from the Champions Trophy, the official said, “All options are open. They have basically disrespected the Members’ Participation Agreement that was earlier signed. “As of now the joint secretary will go back and an emergent SGM will be called. He will then apprise the general body about the developments and an appropriate decision will be taken.” The official said the BCCI still does not consider it as a setback as it is “the vendetta of one man (Manohar)”.

“The ICC is yet to tell us what is the basis on which a nation like Singapore stands to gain more. What exactly are the grounds? Can they explain how are they trying to cut down the operational costs of the ICC which is $160 million?”

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