From the premier cricket board in the world to a body mired in uncertainty, the BCCI’s fortunes have changed. For over a year, the board has been without a president or secretary and with no end in sight to proceedings in the Supreme Court, there is confusion over authority. The situation hasn’t affected the BCCI’s finances yet, but has damaged its reputation. There are definite indications that member boards of the International Cricket Council (ICC) are planning to elect as head someone from England, keeping the BCCI not just out of the equation, but also out of deliberations.
This is a dramatic change in stature for a board that ruled the ICC for close to 15 years, on the basis of India’s contribution to the commerce of the global game. From 1998 to 2016, the BCCI produced four ICC heads. It was the dominant voice in everything related to administration and policy. But its current state has made other boards notice that this is not the same force. Unlike some powerful figures of the past, there is nobody working on garnering the support of the majority or liaising with other boards with that objective. Those who didn’t like it during those days but had to keep quiet have now sensed their chance. The BCCI’s views on a revised revenue sharing model was outvoted by a huge margin last year and now, efforts are on to get former England board chief Giles Clarke elected as the independent ICC chairman after Shashank Manohar’s term ends this June. The BCCI has been kept out of the loop and there are chances that the matter will be settled without the richest board having any say in it.
This is not completely unexpected. Pleasing certain boards to ensure votes, the BCCI had antagonised others, especially England and Australia, who called the shots before India’s rise. The resentment grew over the years and now the others have found an opportune moment to strike. Unable to do anything because of the situation it finds itself in, the BCCI can only watch its powers diminish.