Jagmohan Dalmiya, who turned India into cricket’s financial powerhouse before being unceremoniously dumped by his peers, returned as board president on Monday in place of the sport’s scandal-hit global supremo.
Dalmiya was elected unopposed as president of the Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) as part of a deal which observers say will allow the embattled incumbent Narayanaswami Srinivasan to stay on as head of the International Cricket Council.
“Jagmohan Dalmiya has been elected as the president of BCCI,” Gokaraju Gangaraju, who was also elected vice president of the board at the meeting in the southern city of Chennai, told AFP by phone.
“We look forward to working under his leadership.”
The election caps a remarkable comeback for Dalmiya, who helped bring about a massive expansion in the BCCI’s financial muscle in the 1980s and 90s by negotiating mega television deals before being ousted a decade ago over allegations of misappropriation of funds.
His return was made possible after Srinivasan’s camp mobilised to thwart another former BCCI president, Sharad Pawar, who had been angling for a return but failed to persuade any regional association to nominate him.
Srinivasan had been forced to stand aside after the Supreme Court found him guilty of a conflict of interest over his ownership of a team in the Indian Premier League, the BCCI’s money-spinning Twenty20 tournament.
However observers say that Srinivasan, who cut his teeth under Dalmiya, will remain a powerful figure behind the scenes in the BCCI and the board will use its influence to ensure he can extend his tenure as president of the ICC, the game’s Dubai-based world governing body.