If reports from the Times of India are to be believed, the Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) is not in favor of implementing Virat Kohli’s suggestions of involving players in scheduling international matches in the times of life in bio-bubble. They feel reworking the international calendar in the current scenario is a little difficult, keeping the interest of all stakeholders in mind.
Ahead of the first ODI of the recently-concluded series against England, India captain Virat Kohli had suggested that players needed to be kept in the loop while scheduling international matches, given that living 2-3 months in bio-bubble and repeatedly serving quarantines were taking a toll on cricketers physical and especially mental health.
Reduction In International Games Would Directly Hurt The Revenue Generated
An unnamed BCCI official admitted that the concern raised by Virat Kohli was a valid one, but making changes in schedule will give rise to bigger problems which might not have an easy solution given the COVID-19 pandemic and its effects on the game.
“Everything is screaming for financial correction at the moment but the thing that has left the largest impact is the COVID-19 pandemic and the reduction in matches as a consequence thereof. Add to it the varying quarantine rules and you have a situation that is not in control of the BCCI, but must be strictly adhered to by the BCCI,” a unnamed BCCI official told Times of India.
“One needs to bear in mind that a reduction in international matches means a reduction in the revenue of the BCCI and consequently a reduction in the revenue of the state associations and the domestic players. The revenue of the contracted players of the BCCI is insulated even if there is a reduction in the number of home international games, but the revenue of the others is not,” he highlighted.
He further mentioned that BCCI is focusing on its structure which gives motivation to domestic players to pursue the game as a career.
Virat Kohli’s Suggestion Raises Country Vs Club Debate
More importantly, the BCCI official pointed out though Virat Kohli spoke about reducing or better scheduling of international matches, there was no word from him on his involvement in the Indian Premier League. He said that reducing international matches will result in less revenue for the BCCI, which in turn would hurt the domestic players.
“Kohli has raised a very important point while talking about international games where he spoke about the importance of scheduling, going forward and he does have the luxury to raise this point. But he has not expressed any reservations regarding the scheduling of the IPL, so one presumes that he is okay with that and the possible increase in the number of games once the two new teams are added later this year,” the official said.
If BCCI Reworks The Scheduling, The Player Payment Structure Will Also Need To Be Revised
The BCCI official further highlighted that if the BCCI does look to rework the scheduling in the current scenario, the player payment structure might also need a revision.
“If the idea is put on the table, even before commencing the decision-making on reducing the number of international games, the player payment structure will need to be reviewed, corrected and linked to BCCI revenues in order for the decision making to be mutually beneficial.
one of the aspects that needs to be corrected is the remuneration of the selectors as they together get paid less than a single player in the A+ category. To put it succinctly, Kohli’s suggestion is not feasible and raises the club versus country debate prominently,” he said.