London: With Sharad Pawar set to become the next International Cricket Council President, the BCCI wants to take firm control over the ICC by shifting its headquarters from Dubai to Mumbai, according to a report.
According to a Daily Telegraph report, with India ruling the roost in international cricket by virtue of its financial might there is a possibility that the ICC headquarters may be shifted to Mumbai once Pawar succeeds David Morgan as ICC President in July next year.
As per the report, the office block next to the Wankhede Stadium in Mumbai, where the BCCI is based, has already been earmarked as the next administrative centre of the ICC.
The Bandra Kurla complex near the airport has also been kept as an alternative option. But for that to happen a 7-3 majority of the Test playing nations will be required to endorse the move.
In October 2009, the ICC at its board meeting floated the idea of returning back to its historical home — the Lord’s, but the move faces some tax problems associated with shifting back to the UK.
Even present ICC President Morgan admitted that Mumbai is an important centre for the ICC but a return to the Lord’s tops its priority list.
“It is now an open secret that the ICC board has proposed a return of its headquarters back to its historical home in London,” Morgan said.
“This came about at the October board meeting, when there was no mention of any other location.
“Although Mumbai is an important centre for cricket and business, the HQ task team is charged with examining the prospects of returning to Lord’s,” he added.
Meanwhile, the proposal to shift the ICC headquarters from Dubai to Mumbai has received stern opposition from former England Cricket Board chairman Lord MacLaurin, who feels the repercussions of such a move would be serious and could even affect major scheduling decisions.
“I would be very sad if the ICC moved to India. I think it was a tragedy when the ICC left Lord’s, the home of cricket.
“I believe Gordon Brown when Chancellor was ready to make some tax concessions, but it didn’t happen,” Lord MacLaurin said.
“The repercussions from a move to India could be very serious. When I was ECB chairman I stipulated that England should always be able to play Australia every two years, and that is the sort of thing which could be affected,” the former ECB chief said. — PTI