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04 October 2023

MCC wants India included in review system


The MCC World Cricket Committee said Tuesday it was wrong that the decision review system (DRS) was not used in matches involving India.

Following a two-day meeting here, the committee, consisting of leading former and current players, urged the International Cricket Council (ICC) to ensure uniformity in the implementation of the DRS.

Chairman Mike Brearley acknowledged that the power of India in world cricket was a factor.

"We did discuss that general topic," he said.

"The situation about the DRS is key for us because we're focusing on the cricket and there is an example where the governance, in a very direct way, affects what you see on a cricket field.

"Because of the governance and because of the power of India and because of the fact that other countries we understand won't willingly or easily stand up to India, we have this situation that we don't like, that we have the DRS in place, which improves the accuracy of decision making, except when India are playing."

MCC head of cricket John Stephenson said it was encouraging that India had called for more testing of technology.

"It's being undertaken at the moment at Cambridge University with MCC staff in the background," he said.

"We're hoping that once that research has been undertaken the report will go back to the ICC and the Board of Control for Cricket in India will start to buy into it. We're hoping to get to the stage where India will have no choice but to get into line with everyone else."

The committee expressed unanimous disappointment that the introduction of a world Test championship would not take place in 2013 and that no place had been found for a championship before 2017.

But Brearley said members were pleased that Dave Richardson, head of ICC playing affairs, had undertaken during the meeting to look into possibilities of introducing it earlier.

"The committee continues to be convinced that Test cricket is the pinnacle of the sport and that it needs to be encouraged and marketed in every way possible," it said in a statement.

"MCC will continue to advocate and initiate trials with pink balls and day/night cricket wherever possible."

The statement also expressed disappointment that the 'icon' series between England and South Africa this year would consist of only three Tests. It was also disappointing that some series, including a recent one between South Africa and Australia, had only two matches.

Brearley said one of the successes of the MCC committee was that former and current Indian players Anil Kumble and Rahul Dravid were urging the board of control in the country to stage more Tests.

Brearley said that although the committee was an independent body there was interaction with the ICC, with Richardson sitting on both bodies.

MCC recommendations were forwarded to the ICC and he believed the committee had some influence on decisions taken by the ICC.

"The advantage and disadvantage we have is that we are approaching these questions from a cricket point of view," he said.

"We realise that other people have to be concerned about financial and political matters. We're a cricket-orientated body with a lot of experience of top-class cricket."