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Category: Sport

ICC Bans Pakistan Cricketers

The news that the ICC has banned the three Pakistan cricketers – Salman Butt, Mohammad Asif and Mohammad Amir – for 10, 7 and 5 years respectively comes mostly as no surprise.  The ICC had made its views on the issue quite clear if a guilty verdict was reached and the point needs to be made again that the ICC’s proceedings, although participated in by various people with legal qualifications and experience, are not those of a Court of Law.  If the tribunal finds that the ICC’s rules have been broken then they have the right to impose whatever sanction they see fit within their published rules.

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John Howard: Woe Is Me! Updated

The ICC (supposedly cricket’s governing body) has found itself in the spotlight with the rejection of former Aussie PM John Howard from the post of ICC President.  World cricket has its factions, at least when Lalit Modi isn’t throwing a strop and the boards are falling into line like good little sheep (and I could use a far stronger word here), and Howard’s rejection has opened up some debate on those factions and the reasons for it.

The reactions themselves are generally predictable but there are two which deserve highlighting for their crass stupidity and one for its spot on analysis.

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BBC Crowing About Possible Ashes Free-To-Air

The BBC has been crowing about how the Ashes home series are “set for free-to-air return”.  Let’s take a look at the reality of the situation and some of the different ways cricket is broadcast in the UK.

England won the Ashes in 2005 in what must rank as one of the best moments in sporting theatre for many years.  I cried with joy when Rudi Koertzen and Billy Bowden lifted the bails from the stumps at the Oval to signal the first home Ashes win since 1985.  But this was a series shown on Channel 4, not the BBC.  If memory serves, the BBC didn’t bid for any rights after Channel 4 won the rights.  So we had good coverage, good commentary (Mark Nicholas may be seen as a smoothie but from what I’ve seen of him he’s a nice guy, Simon Hughes is excellent, Geoff Boycott tells it straight, Tony Greig and Michael Slater added raw emotion and hype) and highlights at a reasonable (and fixed) time.

People will debate the rights and wrongs of Giles Clarke’s decision to then award the rights to BSkyB.  The money received at grass roots club level was sorely needed.  Sky’s cricket presentation has improved over the years and is now excellent.

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BCCI: Delusions Of Grandeur

Again we see the BCCI trying to be bigger than it should be. BCCI stands for Board for Control of Cricket in India. Not the world. Just like Pakistan cricket provided a poor example in the “Ovalgate” test match when the team refused to take the field, the BCCI is providing another poor example here.

Begs the question is there a drugs problem in cricket?

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