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Anand Subramaniam in Mumbai 01 July 2014 - 10:01pm IST

India to play a key role in ICC: Sanjay Patel

Hon. Secretary says BCCI's focus is Test cricket and game’s development

Mr. Sanjay Patel, Hon. Secretary of the BCCI, who is now a member of the ICC’s Governance Review Committee, took the initiative to share with the media about the key developments and initiatives conceived at the ICC’s annual conference held last week in Melbourne.

Mr. Patel outlined the responsibility that India needs to shoulder in leading the ICC in the wake of the governance and financial restructuring that has been approved in the said meeting.

“India’s contribution to cricket is substantial when it comes to revenue generation and it is imperative that we play a pivotal role in leading world cricket at a time when we are facing innumerable challenges,” he said.

Mr. Patel was emphatic that Mr. N Srinivasan was the perfect man to be the first chairman of the ICC, being the principal architect of the changes, which would build a robust and viable organization and grow the game in the coming years.

Talking about growth and development, Mr. Patel also spoke on the status of associate and affiliate nations. “Our BCCI team has worked for more than six months and that included a lot of discussions about the growth of cricket not just in India, but among other cricketing nations as well. We wanted the associate members to find their feet in Test cricket and as a result they will be playing an Intercontinental Cup wherein the winner will get a chance to play a Test with the 10th ranked full member Test playing nation. This will give an opportunity for the associate members to play Test cricket, which was a long pending desire.”

It was also brought into notice that a Test fund will be allocated to each board so as to make Test cricket viable for all. “The whole idea is to survive and rejuvenate Test cricket, which is the litmus test for any cricketer,” Mr. Patel emphasised.

India will be playing a 5-match Test series whenever they play England, home and away, a 4-match Test series when they play Australia and South Africa.

Mr. Patel also said that all the bi-lateral future tour programs are in the final stage of confirmation. “We have worked towards ensuring that we will have at least two home series every year from 2016 to 2023. However, the bilateral series between India and Pakistan will be subject to necessary government clearance." 

Talking about increased revenues Mr. Patel said, “BCCI will see an increase in it’s revenues from ICC and all these benefits will in turn be passed on to all members of the BCCI. Such money will help develop the game at the grass root levels and develop necessary infrastructure and help us better cricketers for the future.”

He signed off stating, “We are in the midst of a landmark moment in history where BCCI will play an active role in the functioning of ICC and we assure all our fans, that our efforts will be focused in promoting the cause of the game in the right spirit.”