Nowadays the entire nation has been befuddling over defending champion, India’s participation in Champions trophy 2017. Recently such ambiguity had been made to be disposed of as Supreme Court Assigned Committee of Administrators head, Vinod Rai had called Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) for summoning a selection meeting to pick the team for the International Cricket Council (ICC) Champions Trophy. Earlier today, during the recent talk, the CoA has assured Indian skipper Virat Kohli and the coach Anil Kumble that India shall definitely get a chance to defend their Championship title that they clinched four years back.

In actual such muddle took place due to the ongoing skirmish between BCCI and ICC over ICC’s new revenue model. Not very much swayed by such newly imposed model which appeared to be down to $293 million revenue forecast from $570 million, BCCI became very reluctant towards adhering to such imposition. Despite being acquainted with the offer of an additional USD 100 million, the Indian cricket board has rebuffed to budge and not named the squad for the Champions Trophy scheduled to be played in England next month. BCCI even contemplated to pull out the Champions Trophy this year to reciprocate the whole propaganda drafted by ICC but the CoA has warned the board against heading onto something like this.

Earlier being given the cold shoulder at the ICC special meeting where BCCI was outvoted 13-1 last week in its bid to put off the new revenue model which considerably slashes India’s share from global events in the 2015-2023 cycle. Hence being snubbed by ICC over this matter, BCCI retaliated by refusing to announce the Indian squad for next month’s Champions Trophy before the deadline (April 25).

BCCI has also convened a Special General Meeting (SGM) to adhere to the additional USD 100 million offer proposed by ICC but CoA has made it explicit if in any case, the BCCI indulges into any kind of drastic step at the end of its SGM on May 7, they (CoA) would approach the apex court.

Earlier this week, BCCI treasurer Anirudh Chaudhry had approached full members of the board to issue a letter to the Secretary Amitabh Chaudhry stating that the Indian board has endorsed the decision to send a notice to ICC to cure the breach as per the terms of the Members Participation Agreement immediately.

Hereby given credit to India Today, the mantle has been taken over of the above said letter, the full letter is below:

Dear Mr. Choudhary,

1.You have already called for a Special General Meeting on 7th May 2017 (“SGM”) to conduct the following business:”To apprise the General Body of the BCCI on the discussions held with representatives of other Member Boards of the ICC and on the decisions taken at the ICC Meetings held on the 24th of April, 2017 and the 26th of April, 2017 and to take all necessary decisions pursuant thereto.”

2.In the above circumstances, there is no reason why any notice should be issued to the ICC before the members of BCCI have had the opportunity to discuss the matter and take a well-considered decision as mentioned in our email dated 3rd May 2017. We do not believe that BCCI’s legal rights will be prejudiced in any manner if a notice is not issued to the ICC prior to the SGM. A decision of such magnitude needs to be taken after following due process and the correct forum for that is the SGM. The Committee of Administrators will consider the matter of issuing a notice to the ICC only after the SGM takes a decision.

3.As mentioned in our email dated 3rd May 2017, the Committee of Administrators will extend all possible cooperation and support to any decision taken at the SGM which protects the interests of Indian cricket as a whole but will be duty bound to approach the Hon’ble Supreme Court and take other necessary steps in the event the decision(s) taken at the SGM is/ are, in our view, against the interests of Indian cricket.

4.We believe that the BCCI has not yet given the possibility of a negotiated outcome a fair chance. As communicated to you during our meeting on 21st April 2017, the resolutions passed during the Special General Meeting on 18th April 2017 did not give you any flexibility to negotiate with the ICC and other cricket boards. We also believe that it is in the interests of Indian cricket that the possibility of a negotiated outcome be fully and constructively pursued before the BCCI takes any irreversible step/ measure. Our discussions with the ICC and other cricket boards have revealed a trust deficit that the BCCI needs to do its part to address. At the same time, the ICC and other cricket boards have, during the said discussions, also expressed willingness to find common ground with the BCCI. The General Body of the BCCI has itself recognized the need to adopt a collaborative/ non-confrontational approach with the ICC and other cricket boards during the Special General Meeting held on 19th February 2016.

5.In the meantime, it would be appropriate to make all necessary preparations for ensuring that Team India can successfully defend its title in the ICC Champions Trophy 2017 which commences on 1st June 2017. You are aware that the squad representing India at the ICC Champions Trophy 2017 was to be submitted by 25th April 2017 but the squad has not even been selected as yet. Please convene a meeting of the selection committee for selecting the squad immediately. The squad can then be submitted to the ICC without prejudice to BCCI’s legal rights.

6.We believe that any decision taken at the SGM should be predicated on the fact that India has the best team in the world today. Team India should be provided with a supportive environment to showcase Indian cricket instead of being surrounded with uncertainty and confusion. There has been more than enough negativity surrounding Team India’s participation in the ICC Champions Trophy and the sooner the same is put to rest the better. The players’ interests are paramount and they must be given the best chance to prepare for, defend and retain the ICC Champions Trophy. The focus should be on enabling our team to achieve even greater heights and further laurels, which will automatically attract higher revenues. The BCCI appears to have lost sight of the fact that it attained a pre-eminent position in the ICC not by a combative approach but by building consensus and ensuring a positive image including by helping other cricket boards in their time of need.

7.As your email mentions that a majority of the Members of BCCI have urged you to send a notice to the ICC, we are also copying the Members on this email to communicate our views to them.

Yours faithfully,
The Supreme Court Appointed Committee of Administrators

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