India has made no commitment on South Africa tour for T20I series: BCCI Treasurer Arun Dhumal

India has made no commitment on South Africa tour for T20I series: BCCI Treasurer Arun Dhumal

The BCCI has not made "any commitment" to tour South Africa in August and there have only been discussions about such an opportunity , Board treasurer Arun Dhumal said on Friday, denying Cricket South Africa's claims of a confirmation.

CSA Director of Cricket Graeme Smith and Chief Executive Jacques Faul on Thursday said that India has agreed to tour the rainbow nation for 3 T20 Internationals in August, signalling resumption of cricket within the post COVID-19 world. But Dhumal disagreed.

"When South Africa's tour of India got cancelled thanks to coronavirus, we had discussions that if there's an opportunity , we'll make an attempt to tour South Africa . But at no point have we made any commitment to Cricket South Africa about touring in August," Dhumal told PTI in an exclusive interaction.

The senior BCCI office-bearer then made it clear that unless the govt issues clears international travel, BCCI won't be during a position to form a commitment to any country.

"Right now, we will not even commit that we will tour Sri Lanka in July followed by (short T20 series) in Zimbabwe. Both these tours are a part of the FTP programme and that we are still unsure what things are going to be in two months, so how can we commit on South Africa tour?" Dhumal asked.

On a special note, when asked about CSA Director of Cricket Graeme Smith's supprt to Sourav Ganguly's candidature for the ICC chairmanship, Dhumal said it might be good for global cricket if an Indian is at the helm.

"There has been no formal discussion in BCCI about ICC chairmanship. Graeme Smith obviously spoke in his personal capacity which isn't CSA's stand," he said.

CSA President Chris Nenzani refused to endorse Smith's support for Ganguly during a statement issued on Friday.

"As far because the BCCI cares we might certainly like an Indian to steer the worldwide body and our president has credentials obviously. But again we've not yet discussed it," Dhumal said.

However, a BCCI veteran who has interacted with Nenzani, said that the cash-strapped Proteas should only get a commitment if it backs the BCCI view on ICC policies.

"We will certainly play SA series but there should be riders. Is CSA with India on ICC policy matters? With Chris (Nenzani), you'd need a full commitment on paper then proceed.

"It's CSA which is desperate for a three-match T20. in order that they need to decide how they need to play it at the ICC," the veteran official said.

While the support to possess an IPL in October-November window rather than the T20 World Cup is growing, Dhumal said BCCI won't push for a postponement of the worldwide event but at an equivalent time, it must be seen that in these times, whether an occasion of that magnitude are often held in Australia.

"T20 World Cup may be a global event. Why should we push for postponement of worldwide event? Yes, what we'd like to see is that an occasion of such magnitude with numerous teams and every one the health safety norms, empty stadiums, can it's held?

"These are calls that ICC and Cricket Australia wil need to take," Dhumal said.

Dharamsala an option for national camp

With the civil aviation ministry announcing that domestic flights are going to be ranging from May 25, Dhumal said the Board could explore safe zone options for a national camp just in case it cannot be held at the National Cricket Academy in Bengaluru.
Will it make Dharamsala an option considering that HPCA now features a state of the art indoor stadium?

"Since it's my state association, i might never, from my end, push it but if after exploring options, BCCI finds that Dharamsala can have a camp, i'm quite able to make all the arrangements. Even the hotel where the Indian team stays 'Pavilion' is HPCA property," he said.

"In case, things in Himachal is in check and it's considered to be a secure zone as per government protocols, the HPCA will then do everything to form it a bio-secure environment. It all depends on what's best available option," he added.

HP has quite 100 cases and has recorded 4 COVID-19 deaths thus far .