BCCI suspends CSK, Rajasthan for two years

NEW DELHI, July 19

The franchise owners of Indian Premier League (IPL) teams Rajasthan Royals and Chennai Super Kings were suspended for two years by the Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) on Sunday for their role in an illegal betting scandal that erupted in 2013.

The board followed the recommendation of a panel (Lodha committee) appointed by the Supreme Court on Tuesday and also commissioned a roadmap for the Twenty20 competition that remains mired in a corruption scandal. The panel led by retired chief justice RM Lodha also recommended life bans on Chennai official Gurunath Meiyappan and former Rajasthan co-owner Raj Kundra.

Both were found guilty of illegal betting by another committee appointed by India’s top court. Meiyappan is the son-in-law of International Cricket Council (ICC) chairman Narayanswamy Srinivasan. “We have decided to implement the Lodha committee report (in total),” IPL chairman Rajeev Shukla said. “Whatever they recommended we will implement. We respect the verdict and accordingly we are going to act.”

More than two dozen people, including players and officials, were arrested by Indian police when the scandal broke out two years ago. Three players were charged with spot-fixing and two of them, former India paceman S Sreesanth and Ankeet Chavan, were handed life bans by the BCCI even though both denied any wrongdoing.

Shukla insisted the cash-awash league, which attracts most of the world’s best cricketers, would emerge stronger from the crisis. “Everybody is of the opinion that the show must go on. The value of the league should be enhanced. I’m reiterating, IPL 9 is going to be better than the previous IPL tournaments,” he added.

Shukla will name a panel on Monday to study the Lodha committee report and protect the interest of the stakeholders, BCCI Secretary Anurag Thakur said.