New Delhi: Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) president Jagmohan Dalmiya on Thursday said resumption of cricket ties with Pakistan was 'not an insurmountable problem' and asked the government to decide at least two months in advance on participation in a tournament to avoid embarrassment over last minute withdrawal.
On return from Gwalior after attending the funeral of senior Congress leader and his predecessor Madhavrao Scindia, Dalmiya told reporters in New Delhi that from now on the BCCI would send its proposal for clearance of a tour well in advance so that the government can decide early. "It is government's prerogative to allow or deny the Indian team's participation in any tournament and the Board would abide by its decision," Dalmiya said to a question on the resumption of cricket ties with Pakistan. "But it would be a lot better if the government informs us at least two months ahead of the tournament. It will save the country a lot of embarrassment. Also, the losses to the hosts like money from sponsorship rights and sale of tickets which happen due to a last minute withdrawal can be saved upon," he said. "We have also decided to send in our proposal for clearance of a tour well in advance for the government to decide on early," he said. The Indian government has refused to allow its cricket team to play with Pakistan after the 1999 Kargil War and recently decided to pull out of the Asian Test Championship (ATC) which featured a India-Pakistan match in Lahore. Dalmiya reiterated that the Board was not reconsidering the gradation system of payment for domestic and international cricketers and said the postponement of its implementation was only for working out the finer details of the plan. "There are absolutely no second thoughts on the gradation system. The Working Committee has already approved it. But it could not be allowed to come into effect from October 1 as decided earlier because certain details of the system have to be worked out," he said. Similarly, the new format of Ranji Trophy will come into effect from 2003 and not in 2002, as the teams were not aware of it in advance, he said. "Based on the performance of the teams in the next season, the two-tier format would be implemented from 2003." Dalmiya said the Board would take all steps to ensure that the top stars of the Indian team play in domestic tournaments also. "We would like to see them in maximum possible domestic tournaments. But we also have to be rational and cannot afford to overwork them," he said. On the controversy regarding the recognition of Bihar Cricket Association (BCA) following the creation of Jharkhand, Dalmiya said the Board had already appointed a committee to run cricket activities in both the states till they get the affiliation latest by February 28 next year. "There is no politics, no hidden agenda (in the appointment of the committee)," he said referring to BCA president Laloo Prasad Yadav's allegation that there was a move to oust him from cricket administration in the state. Extras: Post your views