A stand-off between two veteran cricket administrators is on the cards as the BCCI has decided to oppose Shashank Manohar’s re-election as ICC chairman for a third term. Former BCCI president N Srinivasan could be BCCI’s representative at the ICC if the proposed amendments in the board’s constitution are approved at the December 1 AGM. The BCCI has decided to oppose ICC’s new governance structure, business model and Future Tours Programme (FTP).
“He (Manohar) has done so much damage to Indian cricket that nobody from India will support him. He has climbed in the ICC by giving away BCCI’s position and money. He can claim what he wants, but the damage he has done to the BCCI can never be forgotten,” former ICC chairman and BCCI president N Srinivasan told The Indian Express.
The proposed amendments in the existing BCCI constitution include a provision to allow a person aged 70 years or above to represent the Indian board at the ICC. “In order to protect BCCI’s interests, which are being steadily eroded at ICC, people with experience of negotiation and personal interaction with other member nations should be made the representatives,” the explanation attached with the AGM notice has mentioned.
After three years of seemingly low-key representation, BCCI appears to be gearing up to take the fight to the ICC. As for Manohar, he is currently into his second term in office and subject to election at the Full Council in June next year, he is eligible for one more term of two years. Even though election happens at the Full Council, ICC Board meeting in April next year will all but decide Manohar’s future.
As per the ICC constitution, a chairperson can have three terms of two years each; up to six years maximum (either consecutively or otherwise). There’s a provision for election every two years at the conclusion of each term. Manohar became the ICC’s first independent chairman in 2016. Two years later, he was elected unopposed for a second term. During the course, the former BCCI president has fallen out with the Indian board.
Under Srinivasan, the ICC adopted the ‘Big Three’ model that had $570 million as the BCCI’s projected revenue share for the 2015-2023 rights cycle. It was based on the fact that India contributes to over 70 per cent of ICC’s revenues. After Manohar took charge, the global body moved towards dismantling of the ‘Big Three’ model and eventually in 2017, a new governance structure and financial model had been adopted that cut down the BCCI’s revenue share to a little over $400 million. BCCI is not getting its money —participation fee — from the ICC of late. According to a board insider, an amount in excess of $27 million is overdue.
The ICC at its board meeting in Dubai last month had proposed eight flagship events in eight years — from 2023 onwards — as part of their next broadcast rights package. This was done ostensibly to highjack BCCI’s revenue share from potential broadcasters for the 2023-2028 cycle. The ICC has also kept BCCI out of its newly-formed working group that will look into the future governance structure of the world body. “To me, his interests seem to be aligned to continue in his position,” former BCCI treasurer Anirudh Chaudhry told this paper.
If Manohar decides to contest for a third term, he might have the numbers, given his popularity among smaller member boards. Manohar has always maintained that as an independent chairman of the ICC, his job is to look after the interests of all members not only the BCCI.