ICC’s SWG report fears formation of rebel governing body

Vastavam web: A breakaway rebel governing body, the proposed T10 format and lack of interest from broadcasters are among “18 threats” that international cricket faces right now, according to a report of the ICC’s Strategic Working Group (SWG) which will discuss these issues with the BCCI here tomorrow.The report, which is in possession, claims to be a SWOT analysis of the issues confronting world cricket.

The SWG comprises Cricket Australia’s David Peever, BCCI CEO Rahul Johri, Singapore’s Imran Khwaja, Cricket South Africa’s Patricia Karambami, West Indies Cricket Board’s Dave Cameron and women’s representative Clare Connor.”Yes, there has been threat to ICC. A very well-known former cricket administrator (currently banned) along with an Indian TV channel and an Australian lawyer had approached a lot of players and officials in order to form a parallel global body. They had named it ‘Operation Watershed’ then,” a senior BCCI official told on condition of anonymity.

The ICC analysis does not take names. However, it is interesting to note that in 2016, there were reports of sacked IPL commissioner Lalit Modi approaching officials from England and Australia to form a parallel body, a speculation that dies down as qucikly as it took off. Another matter of concern is the proposed T10 format amid statements from stars such as former New Zealand skipper Brandon McCullum that Test cricket will not be sustainable in the long run.These threats could be directly linked to point No.8 in the report which states: “Uncontrolled private investment into sports by commercial operators whose interests are aligned with short term financial gains rather than long term health and growth of sports.”

Also, football’s growth in traditional cricket nations is also listed as a threat in the SWG analysis along with a “lack of competitive tension in broadcast market”.The report also speaks about “Collapse of traditional broadcast/sponsorship.” Add to this, the threat from unspecified “political uncertainties”.