Monday 23 June 2014

Join the Club

Now I know I am going against the flow here but I actually agree with the changes that have been made to the governance of the ICC.

This is because I do not believe in an all-powerful 'world governing body' – what sort of fucked-up Big Brother shit is that?

And let's say you do have a 'world body', in status and power superior to any of its constituent members – who are these people? Where are you getting these world citizens free of the fetters of association with any of the bodies it administers?

The ICC is not a collaboration of nations. England, India, Australia, Sri Lanka, New Zealand etc in this case are not nations – they are cricket associations. The ICC is a collaboration of cricket associations, most of whom happen to be constituted at a national level, although not necessarily, and of course the West Indies aren't.

I believe the power stops, and should stop, at that level. Each association empowers representatives to speak on their behalf.

From that point on they might as well be a bunch of blokes in a pub. Want a game of cricket? Yes, mate. Or – Nah, thanks, we're not really interested.

I can't even see any counter argument that makes any sense.

Don't give me shit about democracy, if you want a democracy then just let India run the game, they have the majority of the constituents, not just the money.

And don't give me shit about 'someone has to make the rules'. Rubbish. And in my own private life, fuck off. I'll play by the rules if I agree with them, otherwise I will make my own decisions, decide on my own value system, like any intelligent person should. We can negotiate on what we agree on.

Yes but Captain, I hear you saying, why then should India, Australia and England call the shots?

If its a bunch of blokes then don't all the blokes get a say? Yeah, for sure they do. But India, Australia and England are only going to play if you play the way they are comfortable with.

And if it turns out you don't want to do that, but then without these guys you also can't find a way to play at all, well, I guess you need to make a decision about what you really want. Your decision, no-one is forcing you to play Test cricket.

So what about when a new bloke sticks his head through the saloon doors, sees all these fellas sitting at the bar, and wants to join the crowd? (Believe it or not this is the subject of this particular post, all that stuff up there was just prelude).

Again, simple, and I believe you all know the protocol there. He needs to join the shout. Or, at the very least, buy his own drink.

This is how I would determine who is in the Test club and who isn't – if you can afford it you are in, if you can't you aint.

In other words, if you have the stadiums, if you have the crowds who can fund the games, the television audience that can attract the advertising revenue, and you can pay your way then you are in.

If it turns out that you are financially a burden, because in reality your country is not that interested in cricket, its really just a bit of a minority interest, you don't have the fans who are willing to stump up their own cash to see a game and so you can't afford the grounds, the coaches or the players, well, don't play.

So if I were the ICC India, Australia, England (and the other blokes) I would set some basic rules.

If you can manage at least 24 Tests in a four-year period against at least four existing Test members, then you're in. All you have to do is get on the blower and come to a mutually beneficial (or at least workable) financial arrangement and it's done.

If you can pay your way, you play.

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