Modi planned IPL-style event in England

Nov 30, -0001
NEW DELHI: Suspended Indian Premier League boss Lalit Modi faced further trouble on Friday after it emerged he tried to divide world cricket by proposing a parallel event in England.

The plan, revealed by England's cricket chief Giles Clarke in an email to Indian officials, involved English county sides playing an IPL-style tournament featuring the world's top stars.

Modi held a secret meeting with officials from three unnamed counties in New Delhi on March 31 to discuss the proposal without the knowledge of the concerned boards, according to the email.

A statement by the Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) said it had asked Modi to explain the move, which was "detrimental to Indian cricket, English cricket and world cricket at large".

In the five-page notice to Modi, BCCI secretary N. Srinivasan listed the details of the plan, which included attracting counties to the parallel league by offering them huge sums of money.

"You have allegedly discussed this as a commercial proposition... that the IPL would guarantee each county a minimum of three-five million dollars per annum plus a staging fee of 1.5 million dollars," Srinivasan wrote to Modi.

He said that under the alleged deal, returns would be shared 80:20 between the franchises and the counties, with a player model based on the IPL.

"You have allegedly planted a seed of thought of players' revolt if the governing bodies of respective cricket boards do not allow them to participate in this extended version of IPL."

Srinivasan added the plan not only challenged the authority of the BCCI and the England Cricket Board, but that both governing bodies would be "forced to watch helplessly while the game and the power of administration are hijacked."

Modi had been given 15 days to answer the charge, Srinivsan wrote.

Modi, 46, was removed as head of the glitzy IPL last week pending an internal BCCI probe into allegations of corruption, tax evasion and money-laundering that sparked a federal tax investigation.

He was also stood down as a BCCI vice-president and as chairman of the T20 Champions League, a separate club tournament organised jointly by India, Australia and South Africa.

Modi is already under a 15-day deadline, which ends on Monday, to reply to the corruption charges.

The IPL, owned by the BCCI and based on the shortened, made-for-television Twenty20 format and modelled partly on English football's Premier League, has attracted the sport's top international stars.

The IPL's brand value is estimated to be around four billion dollars after just three editions. AGENCIES







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