World Cricket’s harsh reality: No India, no cricket…

Governance of International cricket is a really interesting topic.

Indian cricket team for Champions Trophy is not yet announced due to tiffs between International Cricket Council and BCCI. BCCI was recently snubbed in the ICC meeting leading to this delay. Champions Trophy was announced by ICC as the Council wanted to have a seperate competition under its own name apart from World Cup which started much earlier.

But without India, there are no takers for Champions Trophy. Star TV the sponsor is obviously worried:

With the ongoing tussle between the ICC and the BCCI making India’s participation in the Champions League doubtful, Star Sports has made it clear to the international body that the mega event will have few takers as far as advertisers are concerned if Virat Kohli and his boys are not a part of the event.

Speaking to Cricketnext, a source in Star India said that the host broadcasters were forced to write to the ICC after major multinationals started sending feelers to the broadcasters that they weren’t willing to buy inventories unless India’s participation was confirmed.

“It is unethical and so I won’t take names, but one of the major multinationals wrote a mail to us asking about whether India would indeed participate in the tournament or pullout because they would decide accordingly on investing money in buying ad time in the tournament,” he said.

He went on to further explain that it was a clear case of demand and supply and there was nothing wrong on part of the advertisers to feel the heat because very few people in India would have interest in the tournament if India is not a part of it.

“See, the companies will buy inventories because they want to reach the consumers through Star. But then, the reality is that the Indian market and the Indian viewers will be interested in the tournament only when you have the Indian boys in action.

“Hypothetically speaking, if a company like Maruti wants to buy inventories for the Champions Trophy, they will only do so if India is playing. Otherwise, their quarterly target will not be completed and in such a scenario, they will want to invest in other companies. So the concern on whether their investment is secure is normal,” he said.

And the source says that the broadcasters were forced to write to Star as investors want clarity on the issue.

This takes you back to the time when few good men decided to bring World Cup to India and changed the location of global cricket forever. It will be interesting to see how ICC coaxes India to send its team. Eventually it will be sent but not after the usual drama of ego battles..

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