Jagmohan Dalmiya - Cricket administrator who rose like the phoenix

Kolkata, June 2 (IANS) Nearly six-and-half years after he was ignominiously expelled from the cricket board, and forced to quit as Cricket Association of Bengal president, Jagmohan Dalmiya has risen like the proverbial phoenix to yet again head the world's richest cricket body, albeit temporarily.

Even days back, as the raging spot fixing scandal rocked Indian cricket, nobody had an inkling that the seasoned sports administrator - credited with having changed the face of the game through his marketing skills - would make a comeback at the top of Board of Control for Cricket (BCCI).

However, he seemed to have played his cards well, working on a beleaguered and gradually friendless BCCI chief N. Srinivasan, to elevate himself to the apex position in the BCCI.

But, midway into the last decade, it seemed almost next to impossible for the astute administrator to be in any kind of reckoning following his abrupt fall in the cricket administration.

After serving a tenure as International Cricket Council chief for three years since 1997, Dalmiya became BCCI president in 2001 and continued to be the all-in-all in the board till his tenure ended in 2004.

Late that year, Dalmiya foisted his acolyte Ranbir Singh Mahendra as BCCI president in a tantalizingly close election where then union minister Sharad Pawar threw his hat into the ring for the top post.

As the election ended in a tie, Dalmiya gave his casting vote to ensure Mahendra's victory, prompting a dejected Pawar to remark that the entire process was unfair.

"The umpire was the bowler," Pawar had quipped after his loss.

Dalmiya then controlled the board by proxy for a year, with Mahendra being a mere puppet. But the Pawar camp fought back by using all means - court battles, political pressure, and other strategies - to checkmate Dalmiya at his own game in the 2005 election.

Pawar registered an emphatic victory to become BCCI chief while his team won all the other key posts, as the Dalmiya camp suffered an embarrassing defeat.

Months later, the BCCI lodged a police complaint against Dalmiya for alleged misappropriation of funds related to the 1996 World Cup in which India was a co-host.

As Damiya faced a police probe, the BCCI expelled him in December 2006, that also forced him to step down as the Bengal cricket president.

In mid-2007 Dalmiya was exonerated by the court, and he returned to head the CAB in 2008, by defeating then president Prasun Mukherjee. However, in the next few years Dalmiya seemed only a shadow of the former self, shorn of his influence in the board.

But silently he started mending fences with his detractors in the board including the likes of Lalit Modi, one of the architects of the Indian Premier League.

When Modi was ousted as the IPL commissioner and forced to leave the country, Dalmiya started patching up with the Srinivasan-Sashank Monohar combine, though Pawar continued to be an arch enemy.

Pawar, then the ICC chief, is alleged to have played a key role in robbing Eden Gardens of an India-England World Cup match in 2011, due to an under-prepared stadium to further embarrass Dalmiya.

But the wily cricket administrator bided his time to effect what may be called a fairy tale comeback.

According to a board source, Dalmiya will function as its top executive - in Srinivasan's absence - represent India in the ICC, and if secretary Sanjay Jagdale and treasurer Ajay Shirke refuse to withdraw their resignations, then nominate their replacements.

He will also appoint Jagdale's replacement in the IPL spot fixing probe commission.

Only a day after his name was floated by the CAB, Dalmiya was Sunday told to take care of the day-to-day affairs of the board after Srinivasan stepped aside in the wake of the spot fixing scandal.

At the peak of his career, Dalmiya was known as a trouble shooter par excellence. It though remains to be seen how the astute administrator tackles Indian cricket's latest scandal.

Matches

MORE TOP STORIES TODAY

Duminy steals first win for Delhi

Duminy steals first win for Delhi

Furious fifties by Duminy and Dinesh Karthik end a long losing streak for the Daredevils. More »

AB, Parthiv seal Bangalore's second win

AB, Parthiv seal Bangalore's second win

Royal Challengers overcame a stutter to cruise to the small target they were set by Mumbai Indians. More »

Glenn Maxwell carves his parallel universe

Glenn Maxwell carves his parallel universe

Glenn Maxwell seems to project an icy disdain when at the crease. Match situations rarely faze him and the bubble in which he plays excludes everyone … More »

Srinivasan can attend BCCI meeting

Srinivasan can attend BCCI meeting

His status as president of TNCA makes him eligible to attend the Working Committee meeting on Sunday. More »

No way back for Pietersen: ECB

No way back for Pietersen: ECB

Kevin Pietersen's hopes of reviving his international career appeared to end Saturday when ECB managing director Paul Downton said there was 'no way back'… More »

[REWIND] The world record that nearly wasn't

[REWIND] The world record that nearly wasn't

Twenty years ago this week, Brian Lara became Test cricket's highest scorer, but he almost didn't make it. More »

Moores gets second stint as England coach

Moores gets second stint as England coach

In a two-year spell from 2007 to 2009, the 51-year-old Moores led England in seven Test series. More »

Bangladesh senior players to see shrink

Bangladesh senior players to see shrink

Bangladesh's senior players will have three sessions with a psychological skill development coach later this month More »

BCCI is not anybody’s property — Dalmiya

BCCI is not anybody’s property — Dalmiya

Dalmiya feels that Srinivasan’s ‘power hungry’ attitude isn’t helping matters. More »

KP ridicules idea of day-night Tests

KP ridicules idea of day-night Tests

Kevin Pietersen has ridiculed the idea of day-night Test cricket, saying the game would be so different to proper Test cricket that we will need a whole… More »

Rajasthan edge low-scoring thriller

Rajasthan edge low-scoring thriller

The bowlers restricted Hyderabad to 133 for 6 before Rahane and Binny took Rajasthan over the line. More »

Tough for bowlers: Saeed Ajmal

Tough for bowlers: Saeed Ajmal

The 36-year-old believes the T20 format and rule changes in 50-over matches have made a real difference. More »

Maxwell blitz takes Punjab home

Maxwell blitz takes Punjab home

The Kings XI batsman blasted a 43-ball 95 to help his team pull off a massive chase against Chennai Super Kings. More »

BCCI members want independent probe

BCCI members want independent probe

The board members are realising after the Supreme Court's observations that something has to be done — IS Bindra More »

'BCCI lacks leaders to take on Srini'

'BCCI lacks leaders to take on Srini'

Two former BCCI presidents, Shashank Manohar and Jagmohan Dalmiya, have reacted strongly to the news of the BCCI calling an emergent meeting on Sunday… More »

Delhi look for first points against confident Kolkata

Delhi look for first points against confident Kolkata

Preview — The threat of Sunil Narine looms large again. More »

Bangalore vs Mumbai: A battle of the big-hitters

Bangalore vs Mumbai: A battle of the big-hitters

Preview — Given the firepower in both line-ups, Dubai crowd may see another high-scorer More »

Yuvraj tees off to Sharjah's delight

Yuvraj tees off to Sharjah's delight

Yuvraj Singh was hardly convincing to begin with against Delhi, but a big dose of crowd support and a helping of poor bowling meant he had the opportunity… More »

Stressed Trott stands down again

Stressed Trott stands down again

The England and Wales Cricket Board (ECB) on Friday confirmed that batsman Jonathan Trott is to take another break from all cricket with immediate eff… More »

PCB starts another coach hunt

PCB starts another coach hunt

The PCB has decided to not extend the contracts of head coach Moin Khan, fielding coach Shoaib Mohammad and batting consultant Zaheer Abbas, and has invited… More »

Fiery star Stokes bids to curb his temper

Fiery star Stokes bids to curb his temper

England all-rounder Ben Stokes admits he must keep his anger under control if he is to end his international exile. More »

Bangalore's arsenal blazes to victory

Bangalore's arsenal blazes to victory

Yuvraj Singh was back to his best in his first match for Royal Challengers Bangalore. More »

Pakistan cricketers face probe

Pakistan cricketers face probe

Pakistani cricket authorities have launched an investigation after a number of current international stars played in exhibition matches in the United States… More »

BCCI to meet before next court hearing

BCCI to meet before next court hearing

The BCCI will hold an emergent working committee meeting on April 20 to discuss the future course of action with regard to the Supreme Court hearing concerning… More »