Cricket: ICC passes controversial revamp despite protests

SINGAPORE, February 8, 2014 (AFP) – Cricket’s world body Saturday passed a wide-ranging and controversial shake-up of its governance and structure despite strident protests that it gives too much power to the “Big Three” of India, England and Australia. The dominant trio seemed to be the big winners after the proposals were approved by the necessary eight out of 10 full members at a hastily convened International Cricket Council (ICC) board meeting in Singapore.

Sri Lanka, Pakistan and South Africa had all opposed the revamp when it was debated last month, but South Africa’s Chris Nenzani voted in favour at Saturday’s meeting. Sri Lanka and Pakistan abstained.

In the revamped ICC, India — which contributes 80 percent of global revenues — and fellow powerhouses England and Australia will have permanent seats on a new, five-member executive committee.

The committee will make recommendations to the decision-making body, the ICC board, which will be chaired by India’s N. Srinivasan from the middle of this year.

Revenues will be distributed according to countries’ contributions — financial, sporting and historical — but the seven non-“Big Three” members will be boosted by a new Test Cricket Fund.

The Future Tours Programme, desig