The Supreme Court-appointed Committee of Administrators (CoA), which includes the likes of historian Ramachandra Guha and former Comptroller and Auditor General of India (CAG) Vinod Rai, has rapped the Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) for their failure in meeting the April 25 deadline of announcing the India squad for the ICC Champions Trophy 2017.
On Thursday May 4, the CoA, comprising Guha, Rai, former women's Test cricketer Diana Edulji and IDFC (Infrastructure Development Finance Corporation) official Vikram Limaye, shot a letter to the BCCI's Amitabh Choudhary, to arrange a selection committee meeting on an immediate basis and announce the Team India squad.
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With the order coming, it makes it pretty clear that the CoA wants the defending champions Team India to participate in the Champions Trophy 2017, scheduled for a June 1 start across England and Wales.
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.
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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.
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.
- Highlights of the letter from the CoA to the BCCI.
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Here's what can happen now
According to reports, the BCCI Selection Committee meeting will be taking place post the Special General Meeting (SGM) convened on Sunday May 7. So, if things go smooth, expect the India team for the ICC Champions Trophy to be announced next Monday.
The SGM has been organised by the BCCI to consider ICC's offer of an extra USD 100 million to the Indian cricket board. India's revenue distribution from the world cricket governing body has been cut from $570 million to $293 million, but the BCCI still remain the highest paid cricket body among all the 10 member nations.
The CoA, meanwhile, has also warned the BCCI that a battle in the Supreme Court is set to reignite if the cricket board takes any drastic decision on May 7.
"The focus should be on enabling our team to achieve even greater heights and further laurels, which will automatically attract higher revenues," the letter further stated.
"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."