The Telegraph
Since 1st March, 1999
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ICC blinks

The day’s stunning developments began with a call from the ICC secretariat to Dalmiya’s office in Calcutta, with a message that the ICC brass wished to speak to the BCCI president. Almost simultaneously, the ICC’s president-elect, Pakistan’s Ehsan Mani, personally spoke to Dalmiya.

As it turned out, the soft-spoken Mani played a big role in ending the crisis.

Dalmiya, one understands, told the ICC brass that while he was open to a dialogue, the national selectors would go ahead with their job (of picking the second string). However, no announcement would be made till the proposed tele-conference, involving members of the executive board, was over.

The tele-conference (which began at 5.30 pm IST) continued for an hour and 45 minutes, at the end of which it was decided that damages/claims (from a commercial partner of the ICC) would be settled by the ICC itself — in effect the IDI, which is its business arm.

Incidentally, a similar exercise was conducted just a few days ago and its outcome wasn’t in India’s interests. Also, the claims/damages would have to be contested in Lausanne and nowhere else. Now, if required, the damages/claims will be shared by all members of the executive board (10 Test-playing nations plus the three associates who have representation).

Apparently, this Dalmiya formula got a boost when Rev. Wesley Hall, the West Indies Cricket Board chief, “strongly endorsed” it. Thereafter, it became easy.

In any case, Dalmiya is known to make the most of even the slightest opening.

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