Qaiser Mohammad Ali
There will be more incentive for teams to aim for wins in Test match cricket as the ICC on Tuesday announced that it had doubled the prize money for the top Test team, taking the figure to a cool $1 million.
This means that the No.1 Test team on ICC ranking list next year on April 1, the cut-off date every year to determine the prize, will receive $1 million.
This and several other decisions the ICC took at its year-end meetings that concluded at its headquarters in Dubai on Tuesday.
“The Board approved an increased allocation of $65 million as the prize money for the top ranked Test sides and for men’s and women’s ICC Events during the period 2016-2023. This represents a 41 per cent increase in the total prize money paid to players compared to the previous eight-year cycle,” the ICC said in a statement, at the end of five days of meetings.
“In a decision to better reward the best performing Test teams, the Board has doubled the prize money for sides that top the ICC Test Championship table each year at the 1 April cut-off date. As a result, the No.1 ranked Test team on 1 April 2016 will receive $1 million, up from $500,000 in 2015,” the ICC said.
The world governing body said this prize money was in addition to the Test Cricket Fund of $70 million, which the ICC Board introduced last year to help ensure Test playing sides were able to sustain a home programme of Test cricket through to 2023. The fund will be available from next year to all Test Members except the BCCI, Cricket Australia and the England and Wales Cricket Board.
The ICC Board said that thanks to cricket’s growing popularity, it had received several approaches from multi-sport organisations. It said that ICC Director Mr Giles Clarke and ICC Chief Executive Mr David Richardson should meet the International Olympic Committee members next month to find out more about these opportunities.
There was some good news for women’s cricketers too, in terms of prize money.
“The ICC Board also recognised the improved standard and professionalism in women’s cricket by approving a five-fold increase in the prize money allocated to the six ICC women’s events to be played from 2016-2023,” it said. “The women will compete for total prize money of $4.4 million during the period, including a prize money pool of $1 million for the ICC Women’s World Cup 2017.”
ICC chairman N. Srinivasan took up twin role at the meetings as he also represented the BCCI, despite not being a part of the Indian board.
BCCI secretary Anurag Thakur attended the ICC CEOs meeting.