Monday, May 20, 2013

Why is the cricket establishment silent?

By John Cheeran
Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) is in a blue funk. The world’s richest and most powerful cricket body has little control over what is happening in Indian cricket. Its biggest brand IPL is stumped by its worst crisis since its inception in 2008. Three of its players (technically they belong to its franchise Rajasthan Royals) are in Delhi Police’s custody. At the moment BCCI president N Srinivasan cannot defend or disown the tainted trio – S Sreesanth, Ajit Chandila and Ankeet Chavan - completely.
On Sunday, BCCI working committee met in Chennai but could not come up with any bold suggestion to make cricket in India and, specifically, IPL T20 matches, corruption-free. One way could have been making franchises accountable for the actions of its players. If Rajasthan Royals players have been proved to have acted in a manner that influenced the outcome of the game, the team itself should be thrown out of the league.
And not just players. If anyone belonging to the team management or owners themselves attempt things that make it easier for bookmakers, the BCCI should throw the franchise out of the IPL. It would hurt. But unfortunately BCCI is not in a position to propose any such thing. Instead, it says it cannot control bookies. Srinivasan says the BCCI does not encourage betting. To quote the ‘old sport’ during the press meet in Chennai:  “We don't encourage betting, we do not encourage anything.” That’s a valid point, that the BCCI does not encourage anything.

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