India and England are currently fighting it out in a very tightly fought Test series. 9 days of Test match cricket have been evenly split, with the first Test ending in a draw and the second, hanging in the balance with all 3 results possible on a very intriguing day 5.
With that said, there was a very real possibility of the series not even happening in the first place on the account of the ongoing tussle between the BCCI and the Supreme Court. The BCCI has been at loggerheads with the SC-appointed Lodha Committee for the last 18 months.
With the Lodha Committee having had enough of the BCCI not taking their recommendations seriously, they have tightened the grip on the Indian Cricket Team. Until the BCCI accepts the recommendations, no disbursement of funds can take place without the Supreme Court’s approval, nor can the BCCI enter into any contracts.
Prior to the start of the Test series, the two boards did not sign the Memorandum of Understanding which includes important aspects like payment of the daily allowance.
The most recent update reveals that the English players are yet to receive a single day’s daily allowance wage for their 18-day stay in the country so far.
A source from the English Cricket team confirmed the news, saying, “Yes, England team is yet to receive any allowances from the BCCI.“
The English players are supposed to be paid a sum of close to 4200 INR for each day, that they are currently not receiving. This, coupled with the current demonization drive by the government, has tied the hand of the visiting players.
On being questioned over how they have managed their expenses, “The players and support staff are mainly doing transactions through credit card and there was some limited cash (Indian currency) that was provided to them by the manager.“ He further added, “I would not say there are major financial difficulties but there is an inconvenience of the limited cash available.”
It has also been revealed that the match officials are receiving their daily allowance at this stage.
The BCCI and the ECB have traditionally been on good terms, especially under the leadership of N Srinivasan. This could hold the BCCI in good stead as they look to settle matters with the Lodha Committee. It also helps that the BCCI secretary Ajay Shirke had written to the ECB about the possibility of such an event occurring, and asked for their cooperation.
While matters off the field do not look great for the English team, their board can be very pleased with the valiant fight their players are putting on it.