ICC overrules BCCI, panel meet on Jan 23

Published: Thursday, January 17, 2002, 23:53 [IST]
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London: The ICC has confirmed that its Referees Commission will meet on February 23 in Johannesburg, to address the issues raised by the dispute with the Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) over penalties imposed on six Indian cricketers during last November's Port Elizabeth Test match between South Africa and India. Membership of the Commission has been confirmed as Justice Albie Sachs of South Africa, chairman, supported by Majid Khan from Pakistan and Andrew Hilditch of Australia, an official press release said. Despite objections from the BCCI the ICC has, after due consideration, decided to move forward with its original nominations. "There is a growing urgency for this Commission to meet to discuss the detailed and complex issues involved and to produce its report in time for the ICC Executive Board meeting in mid March," ICC president Malcolm Gray said. "The objections raised by the president of the BCCI, Mr J Dalmiya, have been carefully considered but we retain every confidence in the ability of this panel to complete its task in a thoroughly professional fashion. "Indeed, despite his concerns, Mr Dalmiya has described these individuals as 'extremely respectable and brilliant in their own walks of life,' in a letter to the ICC dated January 11," he added. The ICC believes that the issue should be viewed in the wider context of the international game, rather than as a point of contention between the world governing body and the BCCI. "While the events of Port Elizabeth were prompted by the reaction of the BCCI, the issue of match referees is relevant to all member Boards. The ICC is close to appointing a full time panel of five referees and the Commission's report will be of direct interest to the individuals selected for that elite group and may well influence the way in which it operates in future," Gray explained. "It is very important that the Commission has the respect of all ICC members and we hope the BCCI will recognise its calibre and integrity and support it in the wider and best interests of the game," the ICC president added.

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