ICL can start again


Mody, the business head of Zee Sports which ran the ICL, has said the league could be revived “if everything falls in place”. His comments come in the aftermath of former IPL chairman Lalit Modi’s revelations claiming that the BCCI had the “mandate to scuttle the Indian Cricket League (ICL)” and arm-twisted the global cricket community into falling in line. “The matter is in the court and we are waiting for Lalit Modi to reveal more on how BCCI plotted to kill our league,” Mody told Times of India. “If we are able to get more evidence, it will certainly make our case stronger against the BCCI. If everything falls in place, we may start our league again. “Certain things revealed by Lalit were not even known to us,” Mody said. “We knew that there was a stumbling block in running the league but we still went ahead. The intention was to serve the game.” Modi had claimed – in a series of tweets on Twitter on Tuesday – that the BCCI, in its attempts to scuttle the ICL carried out a sustained and widespread campaign against the privately owned ‘rebel league’ that eventually led to its closure; it “arm-twisted every cricket board and the ICC” to change their constitutions. The ICL was formed in 2007 post India’s disastrous World Cup campaign. However, it seemed to have usurped a plan by the BCCI for a similar league. This set off a series of events, court cases, failed negotiations and bans on players and officials that led to the ICL’s closure; the league’s last competitive match was in November 2008. Modi said the ICL, was made redundant by being deemed unauthorised: the BCCI refused to recognise the league, in consequence to which the ICC and most national cricket boards refused to do so as well. The ICL, though, moved court, contesting the BCCI’s right to represent “India”. In an interview with DNA Lalit Modi elaborated on the fear within the BCCI of the ICL, especially the fact that youngsters were joining it. “Yes, this [youngsters joining the ICL] was a serious concern,” Modi said. “They were deserting their state teams. Further, the ICL had proposed to hold matches at the same time as BCCI international and domestic fixtures and as such that would have had a major impact on domestic cricket.” There were at least 85 Indian and 60 foreign players aligned with the ICL.