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14 April 2024

Pakistan, Lanka blast India's cricket revamp plan

By Staff with Agencies

Pakistan and Sri Lanka have lashed out at controversial plans to reform cricket's governing, describing the proposed revamp as unjust.

Moves to restructure the International Cricket Council (ICC) to hand power to India, Australia and England, the game's financial powerhouses, were passed in principle during a board meeting in January in Dubai.

South Africa, Pakistan and Sri Lanka are the only three of the 10 ICC full members who are still against the report, which will next be put on the table at the ICC meeting in Singapore on February 8.

The plan needs approval from eight of the 10 ICC members.

The Pakistan Cricket Board (PCB) after a meeting on Monday termed the proposed plan as "not in line with the principle of equity nor in the interest of game of cricket".

Members of the PCB's governing board said in a statement that they had serious concerns over the planned revamp proposed by the cricket boards of India, Australia and England to give their countries a greater say in the running of the game.

Pakistani cricket legend Imran Khan on Friday blasted the proposals, saying they would take the game back to the days of colonialism.

The PCB said it had asked asked chairman Zaka Ashraf to seek guidance from Pakistan Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif and "to apprise him on this matter of immense significance and of national interest, which will have wide reaching impact on future of cricket in Pakistan".

The PCB said it had received a detailed presentation on the proposal, which it would discuss at the next ICC board meeting.

The PCB met to discuss the issue and have now released a statement declaring their "serious concerns" on the potential model.

"The meeting was held to discuss the proposed changes to ICC governance and the guiding principles discussed at the last ICC Board meeting," the statement read.

"The Board received a detailed presentation on the proposal which is to be discussed at the next ICC Board meeting on 8th February 2014 at Singapore; The Board Members deliberated and expressed serious concerns on the model proposed by BCCI, ECB and CA which was neither in line with principle of equity nor in the interest of game of cricket.

"The board has reiterated the position that the chairman PCB requests an audience with the Patron of PCB, H.E the Prime Minister, to apprise him on this matter of immense significance and of national interest which will have wide reaching impact on future of cricket in Pakistan.

"The board authorised PCB chairman Mr. Zaka Ashraf...to engage with other board members to align the common position and take other requisite remedial measures in the interest of cricket in Pakistan."

Sri Lanka Cricket (SLC) has also take a firm decision to vote against the proposals after a special committee met on Saturday morning, Daily Mirror reported.

The Special committee discussed the legal opinion on the proposals provided by SLC’s legal advisors and also the financial analysis carried out by a team headed by SLC Treasurer Nuski Mohamed, the report added.

A meeting of all stakeholders has been convened on Wednesday before taking what SLC termed would be a "historic decision".

As Sri Lanka's celebrates Independence Day on Tuesday February 4, SLC officials have voiced strong opposition to the proposals likening their campaign to the battle waged against to crush terrorism in the country.

"We fought brutal terrorists who were internationally powerful. But we fought them and defeated them despite international pressure," an unnammed SLC offical was quoted as saying in an article headlined 'SLC will fight ICC like Sri Lanka fought terrorists' by the newspaper's Sports Editor Channaka de Silva.

The official warned that unless they take a stand now, cricket will be destroyed if power is bestowed on a few countries.

“They might even change the rules of the game to fit them. We have past examples. The bouncer rule was brought in by the then powerful England and Australia and wiped of West Indies cricket. In recent times, We know how India’s resistance has stopped DRS becoming law. There is a great danger lurking behind these proposals,” the top SLC added.

The report also questioned whether the ICC's working Group of the Finance Commercial Affairs had the mandate to carry out a serious issue such as a constitutional change.