ICC, broadcasters to discuss India cricket telecast rights

MUMBAI: The International Cricket Council (ICC) Full member countries will meet in Karachi on 12 January to discuss the issue of television rights in India. Representatives from several major broadcasters and media rights holders will attend the session.

Espn Star Sports (ESS), Sony Entertainment Television (Set), Ten Sports, Trans World International (TWI), Zee Telefilms and CSI Octagon will share their views on the cricket rights issue with ICC representatives. The Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) chief Sharad Pawar will represent India in the meeting.

According to an ICC official communiqué, the meeting has been convened following a directive issued recently by the Indian government that all major sporting events involving India, including high-profile cricket matches, should be made available to the public broadcaster Prasar Bharati.

Most of the ICC's 10 full members heavily depend on Indian television revenue. ICC fears that the India government's decision will create a huge impact when its $550 million, seven-year television rights deal comes up for renewal after the 2007 World Cup.

While the government was preparing to release its downlink policies, ICC president Ehsan Mani had written to the Indian Prime Minister, pointing out the complications a 'must-share' clause would cause. In the letter, Mani said such a decision would affect finances of the cash-stripped ICC member countries such as Bangladesh, Zimbabwe and West Indies.

An ICC Executive Board meeting will be held after the ICC Full member meet. The meeting will also focus on the cricket rights issue.

Attendees at the discussions will include ICC representatives Ehsan Mani (President), Percy Sonn (Vice-President), Malcolm Speed (Chief Executive) and Full member representatives Creagh O'Conner (Australia), Mohamad Ali Asghar (Bangladesh), David Morgan (England), Sir John Anderson (New Zealand), Shaharyar Khan (Pakistan), Jayantha Dharmadasa (Sri Lanka), Ray Mali (South Africa), Tony Marshall (West Indies), Peter Chingoka (Zimbabwe). 

Also read:

Downlink policy harsh on sports and international news channels 

BCCI bowls a telecast googly to DD

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