ICC chairman's post: Who will be king?
Shashank Manohar steps down to pave the way for an intriguing race
Cricket is just a week away from seeing the light of day following the Covid-19 pandemic but the sport is bracing for a game filled with intrigue in the boardroom of the International Cricket Council.
The end of Shashank Manohar's term as ICC chairman will set things in motion for an interesting tussle for the seat between the potential candidates over the next week or so.
Cricket's penchant for a bit of drama on and off the field is quite well known and the sheer suspense and mystery comes with the territory.
And this may be no different too with perhaps an intense game of chess being played out in the boardrooms to see who will be the kingmaker who will be anointed the king.
Manohar, who took charge at the governing body's headquarters in Dubai in November 2015, had made it clear in May that he would not be seeking an extension to his term.
The 62-year-old, who also had two stints as the Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) president, could have stayed on for another two years following his two two-year tenures, according to the ICC's rules, but decided to call time.
And the ICC Board met on Wednesday and said that deputy chairman Imran Khwaja from Hong Kong, will assume the role of interim chairman until a successor to Manohar is elected.
The ICC said that the process for the election is expected to be approved by the ICC Board within the next week.
"On behalf of the ICC Board and staff and the whole cricket family, I would like to thank Shashank for his leadership and everything he has done for the sport as ICC Chairman. We wish him and his family all the very best for the future," said ICC Chief Executive Manu Sawhney.
"Everyone on the ICC Board extends their wholehearted thanks to Shashank for the commitment he has shown to our sport. There is no doubt that cricket owes Shashank a debt of gratitude for all he has done for the sport. He has left cricket and the ICC in a better place than he found it," added Khwaja.
The England and Wales Cricket Board's former chairman Colin Graves has been said to be a frontrunner for the post but there are a few more who could be in the running for the coveted post.
Former India captain Sourav Ganguly, who is the BCCI president, is a strong candidate for the role with former South African captain Graeme Smith giving a stirring endorsement.
Smith, who is now South Africa's director of cricket, had said back in May that Ganguly has the credibility and leadership and is best positioned for the role.
Another candidate who has joined the race is former Cricket West Indies chief Dave Cameron while New Zealand's Gregor Barclay's name is also doing the rounds.
Former ICC president Ehsan Mani, currently the chairman of the Pakistan Cricket Board (PCB), who heads the ICC's Finance and Commercial Affairs Committee, has reportedly pulled out of the race.
Either ways, this could be heading for a tantalising Super Over finish.
Watch this space!
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