When money matters in cricket


30th August, 2018 10:25:32 printer

When money matters in cricket

Eying at making more money the International Cricket Council (ICC) has offered established cinema chains, individual cineplexes and theatres an opportunity to submit proposals for regional or worldwide rights.


ICC made the offer through releasing an ‘Invitation to Tender’ (ITT) on August 27 for ‘Live Cinema Screening Rights’ to the ICC Cricket World Cup 2019.


The highest body of the world cricket is going to do this after selling out the rights of screening cricket on television, online and social media and it may open up a new way of more income generation for ICC through cricket.


ICC’s Head of Media Rights, Broadcast and Digital Aarti Singh Dabas said: “The ICC Cricket World Cup 2019 is the pinnacle of ODI cricket and provides the ICC and the world of cricket with an opportunity to engage with existing and new fans across different platforms, ensuring greater access to the sport and one of its biggest events.”


Meanwhile, when ICC has searched out a new way of income through an world event, a Test playing nation’s cricket governing body ‘Bangladesh Cricket Board (BCB)’ is looking for a new title sponsor for its team ahead of the Asia Cup, just three weeks away.


A title sponsor of Bangladesh team Robi Axiata, a telecom company, surprisingly withdrawn its title sponsorship deal with BCB, releasing a statement on August 26 saying, “The current deal falls short in upholding the spirit of the agreement.”


A problem arising out of individual players’ endorsements with rival brands has not been solved and that eventually led Robi’s pulling out of a second time two-year contract, which was due to be extended until the 2019 World Cup.


However, BCB is no stranger to face such an unexpected incident. It’s previous title sponsor Amby Valley, an affiliate of Sahara India Parivar, had also prematurely ended up their sponsorship contract before Robi signing a two-year contract with BCB first time in 2015.


“Robi has withdrawn their sponsorship deal of the Bangladesh national team,” said BCB’s Chief Executive Officer Nizamuddin Chowdhury, expressing surprise over Robi’s decision.


“Robi's decision has surprised us. Shakib Al Hasan and Tamim Iqbal discontinued their individual deals with mobile companies. Mashrafe Bin Mortaza is also in the process of discontinuing his deal with Grameenphone. We were going through this process and they were informed about it.”


“They [Robi] have said that they took this decision since individual player endorsements with conflicting brands weren’t getting solved completely. But we felt that they had a different strategic reason,” Chowdhury added.


According to Chowdhury, such conflicts would not be allowed in the future as ‘players’ freedom’ and team sponsorship doesn’t really go hand in hand. Due to a player individual deal with a company, the company’s massive branding weakens the team sponsorship’s own branding. So the board has to stop players from going into these deals with conflicting brands.


The term ‘players’ freedom’ can create new dilemma between the board and the individual players in future as many cricketers of Bangladesh team does deal with different companies for extra money. 


Hostility over monetary issue among the boards and players is not new in the world cricket arena as an ‘ugly pay dispute’ with Cricket Australia (CA) and players’ union Australian Cricketers' Association (ACA) in July last year threatened Australia’s tour to Bangladesh for a Test in August in 2017. Later the match was held a month later.