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Richardson defends U-turn

2012-06-28 11:58

Kuala Lumpur - World cricket's new chief executive on Thursday defended an embarrassing U-turn over appeals technology and said he wouldn't drag powerful India "kicking and screaming" into accepting it.

David Richardson, who succeeded Haroon Lorgat at the International Cricket Council's (ICC) helm, admitted nearly all players and umpires backed the Decision Review System (DRS), which checks whether batsmen should be given out.

But, signalling a softly-softly approach towards the ICC's richest and most influential member, Richardson said he wouldn't try to force India to lower its staunch opposition to the technology.

The ICC was left red-faced at annual talks this week when chief executives proposed mandatory DRS in Tests and one-day internationals, only for the board to reject the move and leave it as a decision for the two competing sides.

India was the only country to publicly oppose universal use of the ball-tracking and thermal-imaging system, and wields strong influence over the board owing to the revenues from its huge fan-base.

"The point is that the BCCI (Board of Control for Cricket in India) need to make that decision for themselves," Richardson told a press conference. "It's never good to take anyone kicking and screaming to do anything.

"The introduction of technology has always been controversial... but slowly but surely that's changed and I think we're pretty much at that point where everyone is accepting, certainly at international level.

"I don't think (the decision is) negative at all. We'll be seeing DRS used in the majority of series going forward and there would be no sense in forcing anything upon anybody."

The South African took up his post alongside new president Alan Isaac of New Zealand, who assumes the reins from India's Sharad Pawar, at the conclusion of five days of talks in Kuala Lumpur.

The two are tasked with steering the sport through a tricky period as it tries to recover from some damaging spot-fixing scandals and rationalise the demands of its three competing formats.

The ICC has also been urged to implement far-reaching reforms in an independent review which damningly termed the body a "members' club", and recommended a more inclusive board and membership rules.

But talks on the reforms, which are also opposed by India, made little progress in Kuala Lumpur. And Richardson sounded an ominous note when he said nothing would change without the current board's approval.

"The bottom line is the ICC board determines policy for the ICC going forward," Richardson said, although he denied that dealing with India would be his main preoccupation as chief executive.

"I don't think will involve any special negotiations with India," he said.

"A lot is made of that but there are 10 full members and I think our task is a lot more simple and a lot more practical than these high-level talks you might imagine."

The ICC also unveiled a new post of chairman and decided to relegate the presidency to a ceremonial role after Isaac's term finishes in 2014, measures which were "coincidentally" proposed in the independent review, Isaac said.

But Isaac, Richardson and outgoing chief executive Lorgat all warned against expecting quick progress towards the more contentious reforms, which will be discussed at the next board meeting in October.

"I think it would be unfair of any of us to expect overnight change," Lorgat said.

India's deep suspicion of DRS stems from their 2008 Test series with Sri Lanka, when the technology was on trial and a number of reviews went against them.

AFP

Comments
  • Squeegee - 2012-06-28 12:12

    Kick India out until it goes along with the rest of the cricketing world. They are buying influence.

      gunner.zn.5 - 2012-06-28 13:17

      Thats impossible boet. Like it or not, India rules world cricket... LIVE WITH IT...!

      Squeegee - 2012-06-28 13:41

      Why must we? Then we must give up and accept corruption, rape and Julius. No!

      Rob - 2012-06-28 14:08

      No. We COULD do without India AND Pakistan. Let India, Pakistan, Bangladesh & Zimbabwe form their own association. They are cr@ppy places to tour anyway. An association of Australia, England, South Africa, New Zealand, West Indies and Sri Lanka would be fine.

      clive.kihn - 2012-06-29 09:06

      Sorry squeegee, but gunner is right, whether we like it or not - and I don't. The ICC lacks the balls - and has for some time - to bring India into line. So, rob, we can't do without India - a fascinating place to visit, by the way - because of their financial clout in world cricket, and they know it.

  • igenatius.bekker.1 - 2012-06-28 12:15

    The Indians will never accept the DRS. By having the DRS in place, you cannot guarantee a certain batsman getting over 20 or under 5. It boils down to the bookies and their betting. Plain and simple. These are the guys running things in Cricket, India.

      clive.kihn - 2012-06-29 14:18

      Sad that cricket has reached the point where there might be an element of truth in what ignatius says.

  • almeleh - 2012-06-28 12:23

    ICC have no balls.

      shaheen.johnson - 2012-06-28 14:01

      Front foot or waist high?

  • nikolai.kaufmann - 2012-06-28 12:32

    It's simple, nobody should Tour India EVER if they do not provide DRS. You watch them make a u turn themselves quick quick. Wankers.

  • rohann.olivier.1 - 2012-06-28 12:37

    So India essentially controls the ICC cause they bring in the most revenue? Yet SA brings in the most revenue in SANZAR and we have almost no say. How does that work?

      andre.ernstzen - 2012-06-28 13:27

      Totally agree with you Rohann why de we feel the need to bend over all the time.

  • Denton - 2012-06-28 12:45

    Are India afraid the technology will eventually catch up on cheating.????

  • james.eayrs - 2012-06-28 12:55

    Dave, are you allowing yourself to be blackmailed to the detriment of the sport?

  • andre.ernstzen - 2012-06-28 12:56

    India is just flexing their muscle. Because they can. I wish SARU would do the same with SANZAR

  • Paddy - 2012-06-28 13:12

    Exclude all Indian players from World rankings, and don't show their batting or bowling averages. You can't compare someone who who was given out fairly and squarely with a cheat who refuses to walk.

  • Ken - 2012-06-28 13:27

    This is all about match fixing, India won't be able to fix matches with the DRS in place! The bookies rule!

      Chris - 2012-06-28 19:42

      Agree, that is why SA has appointed a tainted coach

      Ken - 2012-06-28 20:01

      Chris, the only thing tainted here is your view!

      clive.kihn - 2012-06-29 14:20

      @Chris: please elaborate.

  • Hermann - 2012-06-28 13:28

    Anybody surprised by India's stance? Not me.

  • luke.sportify - 2012-06-28 13:33

    India rules World Cricket because it has the IPL??? BS, ICC rules World Cricket and India need to be put inline

  • luke.sportify - 2012-06-28 13:35

    Cricket needs DRS One bad session by an umpire can kill a game As well as one decent bribe

  • john.balcony.7 - 2012-06-28 14:13

    Squeegee what the hell has that got to do with anything? Please don't complain about mixing sports and politics when that is clearly what you are doing

  • luke.sportify - 2012-06-29 10:12

    The ICC have "NO BALLS"

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