Delhi hits ICC Speed breaker
ICC chief Malcolm Speed, in a meeting with BCCI boss Sharad Pawar on Saturday, suggested that Champions Trophy matches (to be held in October-November) be shifted from Delhi and Mumbai to avoid any clash with the ICC?s official sponsors for the event.india Updated: Jan 29, 2006 14:52 IST
ICC chief Malcolm Speed, in a meeting with BCCI boss Sharad Pawar on Saturday, suggested that Champions Trophy matches (to be held in October-November) be shifted from Delhi and Mumbai to avoid any clash with the ICC’s official sponsors for the event.
Delhi cricket authorities responded with a counter-demand. “If we get more India matches along with a semi-final or final then we can agree,” said an official. “Otherwise, it’s not worth hosting a tournament where the ICC pockets most of the revenue.”
Why the controversy? Delhi has sold a lot of stadium space to corporates. ICC wants everything clean for its own sponsors.
The only money Delhi will get from the tournament is 30 per cent of the gate receipts.
Delhi’s response came after the Pawar-Speed meeting, after which the ICC CEO said: “We want clean venues to host the Champions Trophy.” Though Pawar downplayed any threat to the tournament (“The issues would be resolved soon,” he said),
Speed clearly indicated that unless Delhi, Mumbai and Kolkata were “free from contractual obligations”, changes in venues would be looked upon as a possible alternative.
Speed cited the precedent of shifting matches from Lord’s to the Oval when the Champions Trophy was last held, in England.
The Delhi & District Cricket Association (DDCA) president Arun Jaitley said, “We’ll take a reasonable stand on all commitments made by the BCCI to ICC.”
“We can always talk to our sponsors to bail us out from contractual obligations,” said DDCA secretary Sneh Bansal. Another official indicated the outcome won’t be all that easy. The next ICC-BCCI meeting is slated a fortnight from now.