A veteran administrator terms it bullying. A senior BCCI official calls it pragmatism. When India generates a high percentage of cricket revenue, why then should it not benefit, the official argues.

India, England and Australia joining hands to control world cricket has expectedly created a storm.

There is an aristocratic class now. And a working class too.

Cricket, in times to come, will be judged by the actions of nations who generate revenue and those who thrive on their largesse.

“India will assist in the survival of smaller cricket nations by raising their share,” is how the Board official put it.

The recent Dubai conclave has cast a shadow over the family the international cricket fraternity proudly claimed to be.

It is not a cohesive unit anymore. Although unwilling to acknowledge it in public, many cricketers look at the development critically, fearing that the lower-ranked teams will be discriminated against.

Scathing response

The most scathing response, amidst a variety from all corners of the world, has come from former England Test opener Geoff Boycott.

“This is not good for cricket, this is not right, this is power gone mad. And I don’t just say India, I blame England and Australia, all three of them are in it. There’s nothing good in this whatsoever. They should be ashamed and embarrassed to have actually put this forward, but they’re not, and that tells you everything about them, doesn’t it,” he said in an interview to a website.

Bangladesh, Zimbabwe, New Zealand and the West Indies are ‘poor’ Test nations. India, England and Australia are the ‘rich’ ones.

South Africa, Sri Lanka and Pakistan are opposed to the revised proposals to overhaul the way International Cricket Committee administers the game. The battle-lines have been drawn but India, England and Australia will in all likelihood have their way.

After initial resistance, the Bangladesh Cricket Board is learnt to have fallen in line following assurance from the ICC that its Test status will remain. The ICC obviously is desperate to protect its flock and pull off the debatable constitutional amendments. The reining in of Bangladesh is only a step in that direction.

One more vote

The Big Three now need to harness one more vote. Who among South Africa, Pakistan and Sri Lanka succumbs and decides the future course of cricket administration is anybody’s guess.

The BCCI official is confident that the proposals will go through. “Every country wants to host a series involving India for financial gains. It is not blackmail but the ground reality. India once had to assure Australia and the West Indies huge guarantee money when they travelled to India. Times have changed now.”

Interference element

The reason India is opposed to the Future Tour Programme is because it perceives an element of interference from the ICC in deciding who plays whom. The BCCI expects “flexibility” in this department.

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