Cricket
ICC Board gives cold shoulder to dedicated T20 windows proposal

ICC Board gives cold shoulder to dedicated T20 windows proposal

The proposal, spearheaded by former New Zealand Cricket chairman Martin Snedden, aimed to address the growing concerns about international cricket's diminishing space due to the proliferation of T20 leagues.

The Indian Premier League (IPL) and BCCI flexed its financial muscle once again, with the ICC Board reportedly giving a cold shoulder to a proposal to create dedicated windows in the calendar for other T20 leagues. This comes as a blow to leagues like the Pakistan Super League (PSL), Bangladesh Premier League (BPL), SA20, Big Bash League (BBL), ILT20, Lanka Premier League (LPL), Major League Cricket (MLC), and The Hundred, which have struggled to find their footing in the international calendar amidst the IPL’s dominance.

A Blueprint Ignored:

The proposal, spearheaded by former New Zealand Cricket chairman Martin Snedden, aimed to address the growing concerns about international cricket’s diminishing space due to the proliferation of T20 leagues. The blueprint outlined several solutions, including dedicated windows for T20 leagues other than the IPL and a revamped points system for the World Test Championship.

This proposal was presented to the ICC board at its annual conference in Durban in July last year.

However, the ICC Board, which includes representatives from powerful cricket nations like India, England, and Australia, reportedly showed little interest in the proposal. Sources of Sydney Morning Herald suggests it was met with “eye rolls” and ultimately ignored.

The IPL and BCCI Factor:

The BCCI, the governing body for Indian cricket, holds significant influence in the ICC due to its financial clout.

The IPL, with its lucrative media rights deals, generates a substantial portion of the BCCI and thus ICC’s revenue. This financial dependence is believed to be a major reason behind the Board’s reluctance to create dedicated windows for competing leagues.

The Future of International Cricket

The cold shoulder to Snedden’s proposal highlights the complex challenges facing international cricket. While T20 leagues bring in significant revenue and attract fans, their increasing popularity threatens the traditional formats like Tests and ODIs.

Finding a balance between these different forms of the game remains a critical issue for the ICC and its member boards.

Possible Solutions:

The report suggests several potential solutions, including a revised commercial model for the FTP, utilizing alternative venues like England and Australia, and fostering collaboration between players, the ICC, and T20 franchise owners. However, achieving a “sensible compromise” that satisfies all stakeholders will be a difficult task.

The road ahead for international cricket remains uncertain. While the IPL’s financial might continues to hold sway, the future of other leagues and the overall health of the sport depend on finding a sustainable and equitable solution.

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