“The board met in lieu of planned meetings to discuss urgent matters for decision only”, the ICC said in a statement, refusing any further comment.
Speaking with TOI, Ganguly listed out the most important issues that came up for discussion at the meeting, highlighting three factors in particular. A) The matter regarding the payment of US$23.7m to BCCI from the ICC in lieu of the 2016 World T20 will now be referred to the ICC’s Disputes Resolution Committee; B) The ICC board and members will keep a close watch on Australia, given that the country has shut its international borders for the next six months and the 2020 T20 World Cup is scheduled there; C) The ICC will gear up for an election in July this year, when the annual general meeting is held.
The matter regarding the payment of US$23.7m that is due to BCCI from the ICC in lieu of the 2016 World T20 – now being referred to the governing body’s dispute resolution committee – has been a bone of contention between India and the governing body for close to three-and-a-half years now.
With India’s central government refusing tax exemptions, a decision that was conveyed by the BCCI to the ICC Board, the ICC and the Indian board have been at loggerheads with the former also threatening to shift the 2021 T20 World Cup and the 50-over World Cup from India, if tax exemptions are not provided.
The disputes resolution committee of the ICC is a panel of persons appointed from the members of the committee in relation to a particular dispute under specific terms of reference. The dispute resolution committee’s objective is to provide independent panels to hear and resolve, by arbitration, disputes between member boards of the ICC or the ICC and member board(s).
Further details on the matter can be expected once the ICC puts the panel in place and those in the know say “things will have to wait until this Covid-19 situation passes”.
Close eye on Australia
With Australia closing down its borders for the next six months, to control the spread of the Corona outbreak, the ICC Board resolved to keep a close watch on the T20 World Cup that is scheduled Down Under.
No official decision has been taken on the matter yet except that the situation in Australia needs to be constantly monitored. A six-month closing down of its international borders means Australia will remain shut for any outsiders looking to visit the country between now and September.
“The World T20 is scheduled in October. There’s a lot of time. But precautions need to be taken well in time,” say those in the know.
The T20 World Cup is scheduled to begin on October 15 and the final will be played on November 15.
The ICC will conduct its elections in July this year and the position in focus will be that of its independent chairman. With incumbent Shashank Manohar suggesting that he would not like to seek an extension to the chair, multiple cricket administrators from around the world, chiefly Colin Graves – the chairman of the England & Wales Cricket Board (ECB) – will be keen to step in.
Between now and July, when the elections are called, it has to be waited and seen if the Covid-19 outbreak relents. The ICC’s annual general meeting is scheduled in South Africa though sources in the know say the venue could see a change.
Singapore’s Imran Khawaja, the vice-chairman at the ICC right now, is also likely to raise his hand up for the ballot, should Manohar “help him get the numbers”.
“Imran has been very close to Shashank so obviously Shashank will want someone close to him to take over. But let’s wait and watch. There’s a lot of time,” say those in the know.
The ICC also cleared the accounts for the financial year 2019-20 as well as the budget for the women’s 50-over World Cup scheduled in New Zealand.
The ICC, meanwhile, has also taken a call that it will not continue to hold its box at the Lord’s in London, one that it has customarily held for many years now.