ICC maintains importance of TV broadcasts for third umpire

MUMBAI: The BCCI is caught between a rock and a hard place. At the moment it is caught up in a legal tussle with ESPN Star Sports and Zee regarding the rights to India cricket. Now the ICC has added to its worries by saying that third umpire decisions are a pre-requisite for the staging of international cricket matches.

The BCCI had requested the ICC to allow India's upcoming home series against Australia to proceed without third umpire television coverage.

The ICC however shot down this request. ICC CEO Malcolm Speed said, "ICC is not able to agree to BCCI's proposal. It is ICC's policy that all international matches must have third umpire television coverage in place. ICC has revisited this policy recently and confirmed that it is one of the requirements for international cricket.

"While the ICC is aware of the litigation that is taking place concerning BCCI's television rights, it is unable to waive the minimum requirement for television coverage for third umpires."

Australia are scheduled to kick off their tour on 6 October. The legal dispute continues in the Mumbai High Court this afternoon. The window of opportunity for the BCCI is clearly shortening. As had been reported earlier by, Zee Telefilms had exhaustively put forward its argument on Friday.

The BCCI is following the court's diktat that status quo be maintained on the issue of telecast rights. This rules out any further moves on the part of the BCCI to offer the piecemeal rights of the upcoming Australia series to national broadcaster Doordarshan.


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