BCCI to push for restructuring of the ICC

The Special General Body Meeting of the Board has authorised president Shashank Manohar and secretary Anurag Thakur to press for a constitutional amendment in the International Cricket Council’s rulebook about governance and financial restructuring.

The BCCI president, Shashank Manohar, and secretary Anurag Thakur (right) have a tricky job of winning most of the ICC full members to their side during the next ICC meeting in April.   -  PTI

With its decision to empower president Shashank Manohar and secretary Anurag Thakur to rework the Future Tours Programme for ensuring “equitable distribution of matches”, the BCCI’s Special General Body Meeting (SGM) has sounded the bugle for major changes in India’s international calendar until 2023.

The SGM also authorised Manohar and Thakur to press for a constitutional amendment in the International Cricket Council’s rulebook about governance and financial restructuring.

Soon after being nominated the ICC Chairman — in place of the controversial N. Srinivasan — Manohar, in an interview to Sportstar, had criticised the ICC’s governance and financial overhaul, a brainchild of Srinivasan. According to the recent changes to the ICC’s model, through a resolution passed during Srinivasan’s tenure at the helm, India, England and Australia enjoyed the advantage of not only taking away a major chunk of the ICC revenues, but also holding on to the major positions for the next eight years.

“The Members authorised the President and Hony. Secretary to discuss the governance and financial restructuring of the ICC, subject to such restructuring being incorporated in the constitution of the ICC for permanency,” stated a BCCI statement issued after Friday’s meeting at its headquarters.

It will be interesting to see if Manohar and Thakur press their stand and get most of the ICC full members on their side during the next Board meeting of the ICC in April. All constitutional changes in the ICC are to be ratified during its annual conference in June.

It is learnt that Manohar briefed the SGM in detail about the possibility of the financial structure, pressed by the BCCI, backfiring on it. He told the meeting that during the ICC Board meeting in Dubai earlier this month, seven of the 10 full members were opposed to the new model, instead pressing for reverting to the earlier equitable distribution of revenue.

Manohar, however, assured the SGM that he, along with Thakur, would ensure that the BCCI does not suffer a big hit to its pockets. According to the existing revenue model, India would take away more than 21 per cent of ICC’s revenue, the most for any of the member nations. It would translate into approximately Rs. 3,8000 crore during the eight-year cycle from 2013 to 2018.

Any alteration to it will mean India’s share will decrease, which in turn will affect the annual subvention to state associations. The members were sounded that though the BCCI is willing to let go of a part of its income, it will not settle for anything less than 15 per cent, around Rs. 3,100 crore.

The SGM was briefed that to avoid a repeat of any such changes in governance and financial restructuring of the cricket’s global governing body, the BCCI should press for the financial distribution model into the ICC constitution, instead of being passed with a resolution.

A BCCI insider later revealed that the rationale behind the move is to avoid the constant chopping and changing, according to the whims and fancies of the 10 full members. “A constitution change in the ICC would mean it cannot be altered again without the consent of a majority of 100-plus member nations of the ICC, so there will be consistency and transparency about the revenue distribution model,” he said.