It is important to have a legal mind in the BCCI’s Committee of Administrators (COA) which the Supreme Court is putting in place to ensure a smooth transition between the old BCCI and the new. The obvious choice is Justice Mukul Mudgal, the man behind the National Sports Development Bill and the head of the committee which set the ball rolling by confirming the spot-fixing, conflicts of interest and other issues in the original IPL enquiry in 2013.
After Justice Mudgal had presented a report on the Delhi and Districts Cricket Association, he was entrusted with the task of supervising the conduct of the India-South Africa Test at the Ferozeshah Kotla in 2015. He turned a profit, and showed up the DDCA administration which for years had been claiming losses in Test matches.
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One of the enduring myths of sports administration is that former players make the best administrators. There are enough examples within the BCCI — Delhi, for one, Hyderabad for another — which contradict this.
Currently prominent cricketers with administrative experience disqualify themselves over the age (70) or the number of years in administration (9) issue. Among the prominent young administrators of recent vintage, Anil Kumble is the national coach, Javagal Srinath is an international match referee, Rahul Dravid is the junior coach. Sourav Ganguly alone makes the cut; he has the twin advantages of age and experience. As captain he had turned the game around in the country following the match-fixing scandal at the turn of the century. Now he could have the opportunity to do the same as administrator.
Ganguly was also a member of the Mudgal Committee, and thus in the know of what went wrong in 2013. With a legal luminary and a prominent cricketer in place, the third slot would, ideally, be filled by one of the BCCI’s paid administrators. These are the unheralded men who have ensured that the game went on during the days of uncertainty in the BCCI. Prof. Ratnakar Shetty has the experience and the knowledge to make the cut.
The Supreme Court’s amicus curiae Gopal Subramaniam and Anil Divan will pick the COA to be announced on January 19.
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