New Delhi: Sachin Tendulkar’s hugely followed farewell Test series in October-November came at a price to the BCCI — $250,000, to be precise.
The BCCI has paid this amount to the West Indies Cricket Board (WICB) on a specific request from it, said a top BCCI official. This money, according to the official, is actually the “reimbursement” that the WICB had sought.
The official also pointed out that the BCCI was not obliged to pay anything to the WICB as worldwide tours for many years have been taking place on reciprocal basis, meaning that no guarantee money is paid to the Board sending its team to the host country.
“The home series against the West Indies, comprising two Tests and three One-day Internationals, was not originally scheduled for the 2013-14 home season, nor was it mentioned on the ICC Future Tours Programme, to which BCCI is not a signatory, anyway,” the official told MAIL TODAY. “The only series scheduled at home was against Australia, which played seven ODIs and a solitary Twenty20 International. But after India’s tour to South Africa was shortened due to a dispute between the two Boards, the BCCI invited the West Indies for the series during which Tendulkar completed 200 Tests,” he said.
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The official disclosed that it was only during a recent working committee meeting that members came to know that the WICB had requested the BCCI to “reimburse” the said amount towards certain costs.
“During the meeting BCCI president N. Srinivasan informed the members that the West Indies Board had requested for a reimbursement of $250,000 ( approximately Rs 1.5 crore) towards the travel costs of the squad to India and the money spent on obtaining visas etc.,” he disclosed. “The members gave their consent for the reimbursement.”
This payment was unusual as Boards hosting a team these days take care of all the boarding and lodging expenditure, but no money is paid to the Board of the touring team.
The system of the home Board paying its counterpart for sending its team was discontinued more than 10 years ago, according to former BCCI president Jagmohan Dalmiya.
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“The guarantee money system was discontinued at least 10 years ago,” Dalmiya told MAIL TODAY.
“Earlier, boards were penalised too, if they were late in giving bank guarantee to the other Board [whose team was on the tour],” he recalled.
Another BCCI official, rather naughtily, saw a link between this reimbursement and the WICB’s quick endorsement of the proposals to restructure ICC. He pointed out that the proponents of these proposals included Srinivasan, besides the English and Australian Boards.
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“Did you notice that the West Indies’ was one of the first national boards to give its wholehearted support to the sweeping changes that were proposed to the ICC’s governance and financial structures?” he said, with tongue firmly in his cheek.
“And who was the brain behind those proposals? Why was the WICB paid? Was there a need to do that? These are pertinent questions.”
Whatever may be the reality, the BCCI ended as a winner, despite shelling out Rs 1.5 crore to the WICB. From series sponsorships alone, the BCCI made at least Rs 180.60 crore from the two Tests and three ODIs.
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This figure is arrived at by taking into account three main sources of income – broadcast partner (Rs 32.2 crore per international match), series sponsor (Rs 2 crore per match), team jersey sponsor (Rs 1.92 crore per game).
Interestingly, Rupert Murdoch’s STAR India Pvt. Ltd. holds all three rights.
Multiply these three figures by five — as the West Indies played five matches — and you get Rs 180.60 crore.
And subtract Rs 1.5 crore, which was paid to WICB, from Rs 180.60 crore, the BCCI still made a cool Rs 179.10 crore from the hurriedly arranged series.