The ICC, ICL and BCCI failed to reach a resolution after a three-hour meeting in Johannesburg today on the unauthorised league's request for official recognition. No further discussions are scheduled and the ICL's application will be now be considered once again by the ICC executive board in April.
David Morgan, the ICC president, described the failure of the discussions as unfortunate but said that the meeting was held in a friendly manner. "I am grateful to all parties for coming together with the best of intentions and the discussions took place in a friendly and cordial manner but, unfortunately, we were not able to come to a successful conclusion in our discussions," said Morgan.
The ICC board had previously discussed the ICL issue and mandated the BCCI to resolve it internally. However, talks between the BCCI and ICL failed last year, prompting the ICC to push for a resolution
in the "best interests of the game".
While the ICC has made it clear that the matter has to be sorted out by the home board - the BCCI, in this case - Indian officials have stuck to their hardline stance on the unofficial league and banned all ICL cricketers from all forms of official cricket.
The ICL has maintained that it would take the legal route if its application, under an ICC rule that allows 'authorised unofficial cricket', is rejected by the governing body. The ICL's hopes for a legal resolution received a boost recently with the Sindh High Court in Pakistan ruling that Pakistani cricketers associated with ICL be allowed to play domestic cricket in that country.
Over 150 cricketers from India, England, West Indies, Australia, New Zealand, Pakistan and Bangladesh have been signed up by ICL, which is now in its second year. However, the private league decided to cancel its World Series Twenty20 event for March due to the deepening economic recession and non-availability of Pakistan players following rising cross-border tensions.
Apart from Morgan, today's meeting was attended by Haroon Lorgat, the ICC chief executive, N Srinivasan, the BCCI secretary, Subhash Chandra, the ICL owner, and Himanshu Mody, the private league's business head.