Players Representation Denied Again By ICC — 30/06/2003
The Federation of International Cricketers’ Associations (FICA) is becoming increasingly frustrated with the lack of player representation on the Management Committee of the International Cricket Council (ICC). In an exclusive article for cricnet.com, FICA chief exec Tim May explains.
At the most recent ICC meetings held in London, a paper was presented by ICC administration to the ICC committees proposing and recommending that players be represented on the Management Committee of the ICC (CC-M).
CC-M deals with and decides upon issues of both a cricket and commercial nature.
The model that the ICC proposed, involved Test Captains nominating a representative to the Committee to convey players opinions. To receive a position at the CC-M forum, the representative would need to receive at least 70% of the votes of the Captains. The representative would not have any voting rights.
Player Opinion And Consultation
This proposal was not about Player Associations and whether they should hold a seat on this Committee. It was not about FICA — the International Players Association — it was about whether players should be able to voice their opinion and be consulted on matters that directly affect them. The ICC rejected the recommendation to allow player representation.
At the same time, the new ICC President Mr. Ehsan Mani in his “State of the Game” speech delivered at the ICC Cricket Business Forum stated -
….“The willingness to respect all views must also extend to one of the sport’s critical stakeholders — the players”….
“Their contribution is essential if the sport is to continue to move forward”
98% Players In Favor
Results of an international player survey conducted in September 2002 showed 98% of players wanted international player representatives formally recognised by the ICC.
It would appear that the ICC has decided not to respect these views.
The ICC decision not to recognise player opinion is puzzling.
The ICC allows player representation at CC-P level (rules and regulations) but not at CC-M level. Why allow player representation at one level and not the other, where both levels decide upon matters that can directly affect the players and such decisions may be enhanced with properly resourced player input?
Consultation With Players ‘Good Practice’
Last year the world of cricket was plunged into chaos with disputes surrounding World Cup Rights issues, in particular how these rights affected players. This could have cost the world of cricket many millions of dollars.
The Rights were sold some years prior to the dispute. There was no player consultation in the packaging and sale of these rights yet a large part of these rights involved rights held by the players.
It has been universally agreed, both inside and outside the ICC, that these issues would have been avoided if consultation with the players had occurred prior to the sale of the rights. That proactive consultation was and is “good practice”.
Yet, by the nature of its decision to deny the players an opportunity to represent its opinion it would appear that the ICC would prefer to carry on as before.
Recently, the ICC in a media release accused FICA as undermining all countries instead of working with the countries which are currently opposed to it.
ICC Turns To FICA
This again is puzzling, as during the “World Cup and Champions Trophy Player Terms Dispute” it was FICA that the ICC turned to find pragmatic solutions to the dispute, thus ensuring player participation in these tournaments.
FICA worked with those countries, sacrificed players’ rights and saved countries millions of dollars, yet all that has resulted from an ICC perspective is even less support for player representation around the ICC table.
The two main beneficiaries of the dividends of these tournaments being the respective host nations, South Africa and Sri Lanka.
Yet, I understand neither of these countries supported player representation at the most recent ICC meetings.
It hardly serves as an incentive for players to agree upon similar terms for the next ICC event.
A Need For Player Representation
The ICC President has acknowledged the need for player input to ICC decision making, Lord Condon in his Anti Corruption report included it in his 24 recommendations and the ICC administration has repeatedly recommended it to their Committees, yet representation is continually denied.
You may wonder whether the ICC governs according to the greater good of the game or if in fact its decisions are based upon country by country political motivations.
FICA will continue to work constructively with ICC administration to ensure appropriate recognition of player representatives, but our patience is wearing thin.
FICA Chief Executive