The Rajiv Gandhi International Stadium in Dehradun has been home to Afghanistan national cricket team for the last couple of years. The Supreme Court-appointed Committee of Administrators (CoA) have now decided that the Afghanistan team will be offered the Ekana cricket stadium in Lucknow to hold their international matches — Tests, ODIs and T20s.
Afghanistan Cricket Board (ACB) CEO Asadullah Khan confirmed the development to a news agency earlier.
“We have received formal approval of our request from the BCCI. Dehradun did not have enough five-star accommodations which was proving to be a hurdle in organising international games. Now we should have no more problems in this regard at Lucknow,” Khan was quoted as saying.
Afghanistan have been using the Greater Noida in Uttar Pradesh as one of their training grounds last year before more to Dehradun.
That was not the only important decision taken at one of the CoA meeting held over the last couple of months. Pune and Ranchi will now swap the second and third Tests between India and South Africa in the month of October.
Pune will now host the second Test between India and South Africa from October 10 to 14 instead of Ranchi which has been handed the third and final Test from October 19-23. The decision was taken at a CoA meeting on June 29 after the Jharkhand State Cricket Association expressed its inability to host on earlier dates as they are clashing with Durga Puja.
In the same meeting, the BCCI relaxed the punishment on age-fraud cases. The Board will now allow them to play in inter-club matches or tournaments in the second year of their ban. As per the earlier ban, cricketers found guilty of age fraud were suspended/banned from playing BCCI matches for the entire two-year ban period.
Deadlock over 2016 World T20 tax issue
The BCCI have sought the advice of English law firm after the ICC threatened to deduct a part of the Indian board's annual revenue share in a continuing tussle on tax exemptions for events held in India. The Shashank Manohar-led International Cricket Council (ICC) wants complete tax exemption for all global events happening in India and is still awaiting waiver for the 2016 World T20 held in the country.
According to the July 6 CoA meeting’s minutes, the ICC wants to recover the tax burden for the 2016 event by slashing the BCCI annual share from the ICC revenue. The BCCI legal team informed the CoA that the Board ‘ensured all efforts to make tax exemptions to ICC. Prior to this event (2016), these events have always received tax exemptions.’
"For the 2016 event, tax authorities directed that 10 per cent of the amount payable by ICC's broadcaster (Star Sports) to ICC under media rights agreement (MRA) should be withheld.
“The CoA was informed that ICC is now attempting to recover the same amount by deducting the same amounts payable by ICC to BCCI," the minutes uploaded on the BCCI website stated.
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