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August 30, 2002 | 2000 IST

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ICC set to discuss
Indian players' offer

A final word on the two-week controversial sponsorship row is likely to emerge in Dubai by Sunday, with the International Cricket Council scheduled to discuss the players' objections at its two-day Executive Board meeting, starting on Saturday.

Having agreed to discuss the Indian cricketers' offer to play in next month's Champions Trophy without signing the Players' Terms form, it is now upto the ICC to decide whether it is ready make the concession or risk the absence of some of the game's biggest names at the tournament.

The Indian players have taken a conciliatory step by offering to ask their individual sponsors not to air advertisements which are in conflict with the official sponsors during the period of the tournament in Sri Lanka.

Board of Control for Cricket in India president Jagmohan Dalmiya, who is reaching Dubai on Friday night, said in Kolkata he would forward the players' proposal at the meeting, with the hope that the ICC will accept it.

He has already washed his hands off the controversy, saying it is for the ICC to decide on players' offer and BCCI can only "act as a postman".

On Friday, Dalmiya wrote to ICC Chief Executive Malcolm Speed detailing the players' proposal and also enclosed a copy of the letter sent to the BCCI by India captain Sourav Ganguly on behalf of the cricketers.

The two-day meeting of ICC's Cricket Committee - Management, which began in Dubai on Thursday, did not discuss the issue on Friday, according to BCCI secretary Niranjan Shah, who was present at the meeting.

The Indian players are at the forefront of worldwide opposition to a controversial clause in the contract which requires them to forego their individual endorsements for 30 days before and after an ICC tournament in favour of the official sponsors in the event of a clash of interest.

Countries like Australia, South Africa, England and Sri Lanka have agreed to sign the contract on certain conditions. But the South African cricketers on Thursday said they want further talks with their board before signing.

The Sri Lankan board has rejected the players' demand to share 30 per cent of its guarantee money from the Champions Trophy, which was one of the conditions put forward by the cricketers.

The Indians have blatantly refused to sign the agreement and their latest offer has come only as a compromise formula that will allow them to participate in the tournament.

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