Much on ICC’s plate
Days before the all-powerful chief executives committee of the International Cricket Council (ICC) and its board meet via teleconference, one thing is a given: the T20 World Cup, scheduled in Australia in October-November, is set to be postponed.
There seems to be some ambiguity over its rescheduling, but The Telegraph learns that India will host the 2021 edition as scheduled. The world body will slot the T20 World Cup in Australia in 2022, a year which doesn’t have an ICC tournament.
Despite Australia relaxing most of its lockdown restrictions, the huge cost involved in 14 days of mandatory quarantine for 15 teams and various stakeholders has forced the ICC to do a rethink.
There’s also some uncertainty over whether the necessary government approvals from various states and territories across the country will be available. That is being seen as one of the reasons why Cricket Australia is thinking of hosting India at one venue during the four-match Test series in December-January.
While the board meeting is scheduled for Thursday, the teleconference involving other committees will begin on Tuesday.
The ICC will also formalise the procedure for the election of its next chairman this week. There’s speculation over Sourav Ganguly’s elevation to the chairman’s position amid calls for the Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) to play a leadership role as world cricket grapples with the pandemic and its devastating consequences.
Incumbent Shashank Manohar has declared that he will not seek a third term despite being eligible for it. However, he may be allowed to continue for a few more months if the ICC decides to postpone its annual conference from July to September.
England and Wales Cricket Board chairman Colin Graves is being seen as the favourite to take over from Manohar.
“Sourav isn’t too keen on the ICC chairman’s post. He knows the BCCI president’s chair involves more responsibility and prestige. The ICC chairman doesn’t enjoy much power and the post is more ornamental in nature.
“The BCCI has already filed a petition in the Supreme Court requesting it to take up the case on extension of their tenures. It’s very unlikely he will be eager to take the ICC chairman’s post this time unless he is forced to by the other members,” said someone in the know of things.
The unresolved tax exemption issue over the 2021 T20 World Cup and 2023 ODI World Cup in India will also dominate the meetings. Both the BCCI and ICC have been working closely to address it, a requirement as per the host agreement signed by all parties in 2015.
A dispute arising out of tax liabilities during the 2016 World T20 in India, amounting to $23.7m, is pending before the ICC disputes resolution committee.
The ICC’s logic has been simple: We wish to avoid such litigation in future. The BCCI’s file is with the finance ministry and it has sought time citing the lockdown.
Stars spread Id cheer on social media, during lockdown, as former India cricket captain Mohammed Azharuddin and tennis ace Sania Mirza celebrated the festival at home with their families.
While Azhar tweeted greetings, posing with his son and daughter-in-law, Sania shared a picture with son Izhaan, captioning it: “Eid vibes #MyIzzy.”