Kolkata: In a virtual rejection of the 'final offer' of International Cricket Council (ICC) on the contracts issue, the Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) on Wednesday said the restrictive clauses in the players' contract were "unjustified" and it would firmly back the players.
The special general body meeting of the Board felt that the inducements to break existing contracts of the players was "unlawful" and the Board should not be a party to it. However, the BCCI will honour ICC's December 31 deadline for announcing the 15-member squad for the World Cup to be staged in South Africa next year. The Selection Committee will meet in Kolkata on December 30 to select the squad.
The Board urged the Indian sponsors of the World Cup should come forward and "grant dispensation" to the Indian cricketers and pave the way for their participation in the World Cup. "These sponsors and partners should rise to the occasion by foregoing their pecuniary considerations in preference to the larger interest of the country and cricket," Dalmiya said.
He issued a veiled threat to these sponsors saying that if they did not look after the interests of cricketers, BCCI would review its commercial relations with them in future. The BCCI president was empowered to take any further action in the matter that was required.