Cricket Australia will outlay nearly A$30M ($27M), "pocketed from its record television-rights windfall, on grassroots cricket" according to Chris Barrett of the SYDNEY MORNING HERALD. A CA strategic investment fund has been established with close to A$30M in its coffers to be spent over four years "as a result of the broadcasting-rights injection agreed to by Nine and Ten earlier this month." A range of projects has already been approved by the CA board that will have money from that fund flow into areas of grassroots cricket and development across the country, "including programs to attract more Australians of non-English speaking backgrounds to the game, more women and girls as well as indigenous Australians and people with a disability." Improving facilities at club level "is also a priority for the broad allocation of cash into the grassroots game" (SMH, 6/21).
Leagues and Governing Bodies
The "dispute between the German Hockey Federation (DEB) and its rebellious second-division clubs will go to court," according to the SID. DEB President Uwe Harnos "let the club's deadline to sign a declaration to cease and desist pass on Tuesday." Lawyer Jürgen Scholz, who represents the nine rebellious second-division clubs, said, "Now we have to involve the courts. It is about time that everything will be legally resolved. It's two colliding legal concepts." A court date at the regional court in Munich "has not been set yet." Scholz: "We obviously hope that everything moves as fast as possible, but we can't influence the process" (SID, 6/19).
Trust the Board of Control for Cricket in India "to create a controversy over what is simply a routine matter," according to the TIMES OF INDIA. It is just four days to go for the Int'l Cricket Committee's week-long annual meetings to begin in England on June 23, "but there is still no official word from the board on who will represent India at the meetings." In fact, the confusion over this issue thickened on Wednesday with three heavyweight names -- BCCI interim CEO Jagmohan Dalmiya, former BCCI President N. Srinivasan and BCCI VP Arun Jaitley -- cropping up as "BCCI representatives." Sources said that Srinivasan and Dalmiya have told their close aides that "they will be attending the ICC meetings." They added that Jaitley had also been requested to attend the meetings, "as he is in London on a holiday," but the board's VP is not too keen. The spotlight in this case, though, is on Srinivasan, "who had promised to stay away from all activity related to BCCI after being forced to step aside" (TIMES OF INDIA, 6/20). The HINDUSTAN TIMES reported most senior BCCI functionaries want Srinivasan to stay away till the outcome of the internal probe against his son-in-law, former Indian Premier League Chennai Super Kings CEO Meiyappan Gurunath, "over his alleged role in the betting and spot-fixing scandal is known, but he remains adamant." They "will try to convince him again on Thursday." A board member said, "It's clear he's being greedy. Having attended so many ICC meetings, what will happen if he misses one?" (HINDUSTAN TIMES, 6/20).
PHONE TAPPING: In Mumbai, S. Ahmed Ali wrote conversations, tapped separately in April, are the clearest evidence so far that Pakistani umpire Asad Rauf, "who fled India after his name cropped up in the IPL betting-fixing racket, was hand in glove with the bookies and solicited gifts." Police shared the transcript of the conversation "tapped through three mobiles" of Bollywood actor Vindu Dara Singh, arrested for his role in the spot-fixing scandal (TIMES OF INDIA, 6/20). The PTI reported suspended cricketer Ajit Chandila "was on Thursday remanded to 12 days of judicial custody by a Delhi court after police said that his custodial interrogation in the spot-fixing case was over." Chandila, "who has been quizzed in custody for three days, was produced before vacation judge Rajender Kumar Shastri who sent him to Tihar Jail till July 2" (PTI, 6/20).
The Australian Football League "continues to vet likely prospects for the Melbourne board" with AFL CEO Andrew Demetriou confirming that "any new directors will be hand-picked by the league." Former Victorian treasurer and one-time Melbourne board member Alan Stockdale "is the latest to show interest in the top job at Melbourne" (THE AUSTRALIAN, 6/21). ... The Hong Kong Jockey Club said Thursday that "it is investigating a serious pile-up during a race the day before that saw two horses euthanised, several jockeys injured, and left spectators in tears" (AFP, 6/20). ... Acting FA of Thaliand President Worawi Makudi said that ManU, Chelsea, Liverpool and Barcelona "could cancel their trips to Bangkok" if the country is suspended by FIFA as a result of the row over the election of FAT president. Worawi "called on Pattaya FC to withdraw their lawsuit against the FAT" so that the country would not face FIFA sanctions (BANGKOK POST, 6/20). ... Leading league players do not believe National Rugby League clubs "need to employ full-time minders despite a string of recent off-field incidents." Several club chiefs "believed the NRL and clubs should consider supplying players with bodyguards." Melbourne Storm Player Ryan Hoffman said, ''I've never felt the need for a bodyguard. It might be a bit of overkill" (SYDNEY MORNING HERALD, 6/21). ... According to a new report, cricket remains Australia's favorite sport, "but rugby league has enjoyed a rebound in popularity." About a third of Australia's 13 million sports fans "are estimated to follow cricket, with tennis close behind" (29%). Rugby league sits equal second as most popular -- "up two spots from last year" (AAP, 6/20).