Indian cricket board sacks Kochi franchise
Board of Control official says team failed to make annual payment
The Indian cricket board on Monday axed Kochi Tuskers Kerala from the Indian Premier League for failing to make its annual payment.
"We have terminated the franchise because the breach is not capable of being remedied," said Board of Control for Cricket in India chief Narainswamy Srinivasan from Mumbai. "We have also decided to encash their bank guarantee."
Srinivasan, who took over as president of the BCCI during its annual general meeting Monday, indicated Kochi had been sent repeated reminders about the annual franchise fee of $33 million US.
It was not immediately clear whether a new team would replace controversy-ridden Kochi in the 10-team twenty20 league run by the BCCI.
"The governing council of the IPL will announce more details later," Srinivasan said.
Kochi, run by consortium Kochi Cricket, was one of two teams added to the IPL last season along with Pune Warriors.
It was cleared to participate in the IPL after a dispute over team ownership led it to the brink of being axed.
Former IPL chief Lalit Modi also revealed the make up of the consortium on on his Twitter account, questioning why a 25 per cent stake was given to a group that included Sunanda Pushkar, said to be a close friend of India's then junior foreign minister, Shashi Tharoor.
Tharoor, who later married Pushkar, resigned amid allegations of corruption in the bidding.
However, Tharoor insisted that he had helped put together the Kochi investment group only because he wanted to bring a team to the state of Kerala, part of which he represents in Parliament.
Former Sri Lanka skipper Mahela Jayawardene, Australian allrounders Brad Hodge and Steve Smith, New Zealand wicketkeeper Brendon McCullum and England's Owais Shah are among the prominent overseas players signed by Kochi.
Meanwhile, BCCI vice-president Rajiv Shukla was named as the IPL's new chairman, replacing Chirayu Amin.
Former selector Sanjay Jagdale was elected unopposed as the new secretary of the BCCI at the meeting, while former India allrounder Mohinder Amarnath was included as a national selector to replace his 1983 World Cup team-mate Yashpal Sharma, whose tenure ended this year.