Image courtesy of: ESPNcricinfo
International Cricket Council (ICC) chief executive David Richardson has revealed that the Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) indulged in “gamesmanship” and were “in the driving seat” during the controversial restructuring of the global cricketing body.
Earlier this year, BCCI secretary Sanjay Patel admitted that the board were planning to create their own world cricketing body if their demands for a greater share of revenue were not met.
“India were saying, ‘We need to have more of a say, we need more money’. So it was a negotiation; it turned into a negotiation,” Richardson told the BBC’s Test Match Special. “There was gamesmanship, certainly some people have more influence than others and more authority.
“Certainly India are in the driving seat when it comes to being in a good position at the negotiating table, bearing in mind their tours of every country are the extreme revenue generators.”
However, Richardson noted that the ICC still made all the main decisions.
“The reality is, although there’s been a lot of talk about change, it is the people who were having the most influence of the ICC board in the past that will still have the most influence going forward,” Richardson said. “It is a clash of ideologies essentially; there are people who think the ICC should be a more independent body and others think it should remain a members’ body.
“More than anything this has been a wake-up to other countries who have sat back and let things happen, having no real say at meetings.
“There were people attending meetings, sometimes seemingly sleeping at them, not participating, not contributing.
“When that happens there is going to be a power vacuum and people who have the authority are going to take control.”
Despite his comments about the BCCI, Richardson defended the decision to appoint exiled BCCI president Narayanaswami Srinivasan as ICC chairman.
“The Supreme Court has not gone as far as to say he should not be involved with ICC or be the next chairman,” he said. “What we do know is the Supreme Court charges to be investigated are totally unsubstantiated at this point in time.”