MUMBAI: The BCCI has “very important” matters on hand to discuss and resolve for a variety of reasons when its apex council meets via a teleconference on Saturday.
For the record, this apex council meeting will mark a full year of members regaining control of the Board post a 33-month hiatus when the SC-appointed Committee of Administrators (COA) were in control and the members have their task cut out for them.
Questions over payments
The likelihood of BCCI hosting any domestic cricket this season has begun to appear bleaker with each passing week. However, there are those who seem to be of the view that a shorter-version of the Ranji Trophy or some other tournament can still be held starting or post-December. How? Nobody has an idea yet.
What’s of greater importance right though, is whether BCCI will ensure all First-Class cricketers are paid for the season, regardless of whether cricket is played.
These tournaments provide scores of players and their families a source of livelihood. On an average, a first-class cricketer makes Rs. 12-15 lakh a year. “We hope the BCCI will consider our well-being,” is the refrain of most of the players.
No jersey sponsor yet
Going by the tentative schedule of India’s tour of Australia — starting last week of November — Team India has close to a month to find a jersey sponsor. The last time BCCI floated a tender, not a single bidding party came to the table. In trying to avoid a similar embarrassment once again, BCCI needs to “do its homework” soon before floating the tender again — unless, of course, the Board thinks Team India has no choice left but to fly to Australia without a sponsor.
Functioning of the NCA
The NCA finds itself in the middle of a crisis with BCCI recently deciding not to renew contracts of coaching staff. Why? The Board argues these appointments were done by the COA without following due processes and there’s no need for renewals until domestic cricket resumes.
Further, the Board has sought to “assess” the functioning of support staff at NCA and is learnt to be seeking feedback from cricketers on the same, including physiotherapist Ashish Kaushik, whose role has been under scrutiny in recent months owing to either constant player-injuries or refusal of players to head to the NCA. Those in the know ask “how can feedback be sought from players? Fear or favour — either factor will most likely not induce an honest feedback. Why not do a clinical assessment?”.
Interesting times lie ahead.