London, 27 January
Former England captain Michael Atherton has openly criticised the move by the cricket boards of England, India and Australia to take control of the International Cricket Council and also enjoy bigger share of the revenues of the governing body.
"…the end of the notion that a fair and principled and just body can govern cricket in the interests of all. It is an ideal, of course, that has never been grounded in any kind of reality under the guise of the ICC, but if you cannot be idealistic about sport, what can you be idealistic about?" Atherton has questioned in his column for the ‘Times’. Atherton gives some credence, if reluctantly, to the view that England and Australia feel they have no choice but to grant India power in a way that will encourage them to run the world game responsibly – and even suggests India has now been affected with the arrogance of old colonialism.
Former New Zealand captain Martin Crowe has joined the chorus calling for the withdrawal of the controversial proposal to revamp the ICC piloted by India, England and Australia, despite his country’s Board’s support to the plan.
Earlier, former West Indies captain Clive Llyod and ex-ICC top officials Malcolm Gray and Malcolm Speed were alos vociferous in demanding withdrawal of the controversial proposal.
Gray, a former ICC chief, and Speed, a former ICC CEO, have broken away from their national board’s position by taking the stand against the proposal. Lloyd was a one-time chairman of the ICC Cricket Committee as well as ICC match referee. Former Pakistan captain Rameez Raja, however, has advised the Cricket Board (PCB) to accept the working proposal. The PCB has not made its stance clear on the working paper and proposals.