Indian cricket fans will be in for huge disappointment during the upcoming limited-overs series between India and Australia.
In what will come as a huge blow to many followers of the game, Australian great Ian Chappell will not be part of the commentary panel for the series between the two top ODI teams in the world reports the Hindustan Times.
Chappell has reportedly refused to tow the line as far as the BCCI is concerned. All commentators who feature for India-related series’ are reportedly bound by some strict guidelines, only on the adherence of which, they are given the job.
The Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) has mandated that commentators must not criticise the India team selection, its opposition of the Decision Review System or speak on the Board’s administrative matters.
But despite the compensation and benefits being rich for agreeing to these terms, Chappell has declined from taking up the assignment. Chappell was offered the opportunity by the main broadcaster ESPN, but Chappell passed it up refusing to accept the BCCI’s terms and conditions.
“I was invited by ESPN to do commentary. I emailed back asking who I was working for and the reply was; I was contracted by ESPN but I would be subject to BCCI restrictions,” Chappell told HT in an e-mail interaction.
“I emailed back to ask what these restrictions were and was told; ‘I couldn’t talk about Indian selection, DRS or administrative matters. I responded saying I didn’t feel I could do my job properly under those circumstances and therefore declined the offer.” added Chappell.
Chappell has historically been known for being a straight-talker and on who is never shy of expressing his opinions. Hence this latest episode comes as no surprise, and Indian cricket fans will be devoid of some real good commentary from the former Aussie captain.
There were some reports that claimed that Mathew Hayden had been signed up to replace him, but Chappell said he was unaware of that.
“I’m not sure what happened with other commentators. It wasn’t a matter of being asked to sign anything – it never reached that stage,” he concluded.
Australia will play seven ODIs and a T20 in India. The tour starts with a one-off T20 tie in Rajkot on October 10, followed by the ODIs.