Ramiz Raja‘s proposal for a quadrangular T20 event may have acquired some non-specific support ahead of his presentation of the plans to the ICC Board on Saturday.
Ramiz, the PCB chairman, will present an idea for an annual tournament involving Pakistan, India, Australia and England, but one, he says, will create revenue for all members. The plans also call for the ICC to run the event.
Though this specific plan seems unlikely to become reality – at least not in its current formulation that would require India and Pakistan to play regularly and exclude eight full members – it does appear to have prompted greater support for the idea that members be able to organise their own quadrangular tournaments.
As ICC regulations on the sanctioning of events currently stand, any tournament involving “the National Representative Teams of more than three National Cricket Federations” is deemed to mean an ICC event – meaning that it is run by the ICC and sold commercially as an ICC event, from which the proceeds are divided between members.
Though Ramiz’s plan foresees precisely that – that the ICC controls the event – the Chief Executives’ Committee (CEC) meeting on Friday in Dubai saw CEOs advocating the idea of members being able to organise their own quadrangular events.
According to two officials aware of developments at the meeting, a number of boards backed the idea. It is by no means unanimous support, but it is believed that the cricket boards of England (ECB), Australia (CA), West Indies (CWI) and Pakistan (PCB) were in favour. One official said Tom Harrison, the ECB’s CEO, brought up the idea at the meeting.
Harrison’s pitch is not thought to be linked specifically to Ramiz’s plans but one PCB official did call it a “kind of a win for us” as it shows the idea of a quadrangular tournament has caught the imagination of boards. It isn’t clear what the BCCI’s stance was at the CEC, though indications are that they are not in direct opposition: Sourav Ganguly, the BCCI president, was actually the first to propose a four-national Super Series back in December 2019.
How far the idea goes depends on the level of support among the CEC. It is thought a clear majority would need to agree, before putting a proposal forward to the Board and only once it is agreed upon at the Board level can the regulation regarding the sanctioning of events be changed.
The question of quadrangular events would have come up at the Board meeting in any case because Ramiz was always going to make his presentation there. But that presentation now may span out into a wider discussion.
Osman Samiuddin is a senior editor at ESPNcricinfo
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