BCCI likely to cancel ongoing cricket series between India and New Zealand - Report

BCCI is mulling over cancelling the series after a Supreme Court-appointed committee directed to freeze the cricket board's bank accounts.

India v New Zealand
New Zealand have maintained they have not officialy heard anything from the BCCI Reuters

Indian cricket's governing body, Board of Control for Cricket (BCCI) in India is mulling cancelling the ongoing Test and upcoming limited overs series against New Zealand.

A top BCCI official had reportedly hinted the board's possible stand after the Indian Supreme Court appointed Lodha Committee, which has recommended sweeping reforms to the structure of the cricket board, issued a letter to banks asking them not to disburse funds to state cricket associations in the country.

Team India have already taken an unassailable 2-0 lead in the Test series and have clinched the top-spot in the International Cricket Council (ICC) Test rankings. Virat Kohli's men were scheduled to host the Black Caps in the third Test from 8 October in Indore, a city in the central Indian state of Madhya Pradesh.

"How can we play the Test against New Zealand when we won't have the money to pay their board for the tour?," a senior BCCI official said, as quoted by the Times of India.

"They [Lodha panel] are raising questions over money that belongs to the BCCI and is being distributed to its member associations under its rules and regulations.

"The match cannot go ahead. Let's not make a fool of ourselves throughout the world for not being able to pay. Let the New Zealand team leave honourably."

The official also expressed doubts about India's ability to continue their home season, in which they will be hosting England, Australia and Bangladesh in the coming months.

Notably, the banks associated with the BCCI have already frozen their account as the directive came from the Supreme Court appointed committee, according to the report.

A letter was sent to the secretary, treasurer and the chief executive officer of the BCCI saying the board had violated the Supreme Court's judgement.

At an emergent meeting on 30 September, the BCCI had decided to give additional funds to the existing infrastructure subsidy of Rs 60 crore ($9m approx) to its full member associations. Also, the money from the cancelled Champions League Twenty20 was to be distributed equally among them.

"You are aware that by way of this committee's direction dated 31.8.2016, no further decisions were to be taken regarding the future apart from routine matters. The disbursement of these amounts are not routine, and in any case, not emergent," the e-mail read, according to the newspaper report.

However, Justice RM Lodha, head of the Supreme Court-appointed committee has reportedly revealed that they had not directed the banks to stop the money flow for routine matters and that the BCCI should have no problems going ahead with the New Zealand series.

"Our directions will not affect BCCI's day-to-day matters. Banks have not been directed to stop the money flow for routine matters. No question of calling off the India vs New Zealand series. No direction from our side to cancel the ongoing series," Lodha was quoted as saying by the India Today.

Meanwhile, New Zealand cricket's spokesperson has confirmed they have not heard anything about the cancellation from the BCCI and they will be going ahead with their preparations for the third Test.