BCCI and Sahara reach compromise, Pune Warriors to play in IPL

BCCI and Sahara reach compromise, Pune Warriors to play in IPL

Post by Dr. Jai Mahar » Sat, 18 Feb 2012 11:37:53

BCCI and Sahara reach compromise, Pune Warriors to play in IPL

The Pioneer
Thursday, February 16, 2012

Indraprasth aka New Delhi - The BCCI and the aggrieved Sahara Group
today reached a compromise after a series of hectic negotiations over
the past few days, paving the way for Pune Warriors' participation in
the fifth edition of the IPL.

Sahara, which had severed ties with the Board and withdrawn the Team
India sponsorship on February 4, will return as a sponsor following
the truce which brought an end to the 12-day stalemate.

Both BCCI and Sahara issued a joint statement, giving details of the
agreement which envisaged a reactivation of the auction purse for
Pune Warriors and an extension of the trading window among other

Regarding the contentious issue of replacement for marquee player
Yuvraj Singh, who is undergoing treatment for cancer in United
States, Sahara has offered to obtain the consent of all the
franchises for fielding five foreign players for the IPL matches.

"The trading window, which was due to close on Friday 17 February,
until Wednesday 29 February 2012 to give Pune Warriors India the
opportunity to have successful negotiations with other franchises as
it looks to strengthen its squad," the joint statement said.

"Re-activation of the Auction Purse of Pune Warriors India so that it
can take a number of players, subject to the squad composition
regulations," it added.

The BCCI and Sahara also agreed to start the arbitration proceedings
initiated by Sahara through appointment of an arbitrator to address
the corporate giant's claims for a reduction in franchise fee for 74

The BCCI also did not have any issues with Sahara seeking a strategic
partner in the Pune Warriors India franchise, subject to terms of the
Franchise Agreement.

"In respect of their request to sign overseas players who were not
included in the Auction Register, subject to the relevant player
regulations, BCCI agrees to the request subject to the views of all
other franchise," the joint statement, signed by BCCI President N
Srinivasan and Sahara Group Chairman Subrata Roy, said.

Sahara also requested for one of the play-off matches scheduled to be
played in Bengaluru to be played in Pune, and the BCCI said it was in
principle agreeable to host one of the play-off in the new Pune
stadium subject to the consent of Royal Challengers Bangalore.

The right to host the Play Off matches is awarded to the finalists
from previous edition, in this case Royal Challengers Bangalore.

Sahara has also requested to furnish the Bank Guarantee against the
Franchisee fee in two installments and the BCCI has agreed to
consider it at the next available opportunity.

"Notwithstanding the recent working committee decision rejecting 5
foreign players in the playing XI, in consideration of the
exceptional circumstance and the non-availability of Yuvraj Singh,
Sahara has offered to obtain the consent of all the franchises for
the submission to the BCCI," said the statement said.

BCCI said in line with its normal practice, it will continue to
engage with all franchises to find ways to enhance the
competitiveness of the league and improve the fan experience.

"Sahara confirms that it will continue sponsorship of the Indian
team. Sahara may want to exercise its right to assign the sponsorship
as per the agreement," said the statement.

Sahara, sponsor of the Indian team for over 11 years, decided to part
ways with the BCCI on February 4, complaining that the Board did not
give due consideration to its genuine grievances with regards to
players and number of matches in the IPL. The decision to severe all
ties with BCCI was taken just hours before the IPL auction got
underway in Bangalore.

The BCCI's Working Committee had met in Chennai on February 13 but
had failed to resolve the standoff.

The Board's Working Committee rejected some demands of the long-time
sponsor and refused to make "exceptions" for the company.

After over three hours of deliberation at its Working Committee
meeting, the BCCI said it had communicated its decisions with regards
to Sahara's demands to the company and hoped for a "favourable

The BCCI had also made it clear that while it could show some
flexibility but it should not be expected to make exceptions for the
corporate giant, which owns the costliest IPL team.

Sahara had signed a renewed sponsorship agreement with the BCCI on
July 1, 2010 till December 31, 2013 and was paying Rs. 3.34 crore per
Test match, one-day international and Twenty20 International under
the new terms. The deal is said to be worth Rs. 532 crore.

The BCCI could have lost close to Rs 2000 crore if no solution was
found. However, the Board could have found another sponsor to
neutralise the losses.

We don't want player retention policy in future IPL: Roy

Sahara Group Chairman Subrata Roy, who reached a compromise with the
Cricket Board to pave the way for Pune Warriors' participation in the
IPL, today demanded an open auction without any player retention to
make the cash-rich Twenty20 league more entertaining.

Roy said that doing away with player retention would lead to the
teams being more balanced which he said would produce more thrilling

"One request of ours is not included in the joint statement, but BCCI
has definitely given us very positive assurance for looking into the
matter seriously in the near future," Roy said in a statement issued
after he and Board President reached on a compromise paving way for
the corporate giants return as Team India sponsor.

"Viewers' interest and their point of view should be given highest
priority. Viewers should enjoy each and every match preferably with a
thrilling finish in the last over. That is only possible when all the
teams are well balanced. Even two weak teams can start defusing the
charm of IPL.

"There should be perfect level playing field. We have strongly
requested open auction without any kind of retention. Due to
retention policy, a disparity in player ability and corresponding
payment structure is created," he said.

He thanked all those who took part in the series of hectic
discussions which led to the breaking of the 12-day impasse between
Sahara and the BCCI.

"I genuinely appreciate all concerned senior officials of BCCI for
their initiative in resolving the issue. My thanks to N Srinivasan,
Arun Jaitley, Sanjay Jagdale, Rajiv Shukla, Ajay Shirke and Sundar
Raman. Emotional initiative by Shashank Manohar is highly
appreciated. With all his positivity, Shahrukh Khan motivated
everybody by going out of his way, in the interest of IPL and
Cricket," Roy said.

"I Put on record the overwhelming support of media which truly helped
to take it to the rightful resolution. Media has definitely proved to
be so positive towards the cause of IPL and Cricket."



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