The International Cricket Council has decided to pay seven full-member Boards $10 million over the next eight years as part of Test Cricket Fund announced last year when Big Three (BCCI, ECB and CA) had gained control over revamped ICC.
According to ESPNcricinfo, the remaining full-member boards will receive $1.25 million each annually, beginning January 2016.
The ICC plans to make its first Test Cricket Fund payment of USD 600,000 in early January, and then disburse another USD 650,000 to the ’small seven’ member boards in July. Payments are expected to follow this biannual pattern until 2023.
The ICC had originally announced that the Test Cricket Fund was aimed to “encourage and support Test cricket” outside the Big Three nations, BCCI, ECB and CA.
Since the Boards have already entered bilateral touring agreements until 2023, there appears to be limited scope to enhance their Test schedules using this payments.
The report says, “it seems that the money would be used to underwrite loss-making tours. For example, Sri Lanka Cricket (SLC) loses money on Test tours featuring all countries except the Big Three and Pakistan.”
The Test Cricket Fund would help them recover losses from home tours such as the recent visit by the West Indies, which is estimated to have cost SLC about $648,000.
The Test Cricket Fund had been among the chief incentives offered to the smaller boards, as the BCCI, ECB and CA sought support for their control over the ICC in January and February last year.
However, the ICC is yet to announce the funds’ terms of usage, or how it will hold boards accountable to the objective of encouraging Test cricket