I was delighted to receive news from the Appeal Court in London on Friday, that, together with International Management Group, (IMG) I have won an important appeal that confirms a defamation case against ECB Chairman Giles Clarke, who will now have to defend himself at trial.
I have brought the case because an e-mail sent by Mr. Clarke to Mr Shashank Manohar, the President of the Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) in May last year, which referred to a meeting I was involved in, contained content that I, and my lawyers believe was defamatory towards me.
I, and IMG therefore brought a libel case against Mr. Clarke who attempted to de-rail the trial on a technicality; a claim which was originally upheld.
However, we strenuously believed this technical judgement was wrong and appealed the decision to ensure the case against Mr. Clarke would go ahead. I am therefore delighted that today's ruling in our favour confirms that this will, indeed be the case and that the Chairman of the ECB will have to defend his comments in open court. The court have also approved an order for Mr Clarke to pay the appeal hearing costs for all parties and I now look forward to hearing Mr. Clarke's explanation at the trial.
Democracy returns to Rajasthan
I was also pleased to hear news from back home in India, of the changes within the Rajasthan Cricket Association - and most notably the suspension of Secretary, Sanjay Dixit - that restore a crucial level of democracy to cricket in the region.
Mr. Dixit's removal after a motion at an emergency meeting in Udaipur, received a two-thirds majority from within the RCA's voting units. As a former President of the association and current President of the District Association of Nagaur, the restoration of voting rights for certain member associations that Mr. Dixit unilaterally withdrew, will now allow the RCA to move forward as a collective and unified voice, which can only be good for the game in the region.
Mr. Dixit's tenure as secretary resulted in a series of decisions that he failed to seek approval for from his members and so the corrective steps taken by the RCA - and in particular, President CP Joshi - is to be applauded. Voting rights have now been restored to Nagore, Sriganganagar and Jalore and the new, democratic approach that results, can only be good for the game in the region and for those who play it there.
To many of you reading this across the world, it may all sound like nothing more than a little local squabble, but the previous administration's activities were capable of putting the RCA in a bad light on a much wider scale. Sanjay Dixit, you may recall, was the man who's actions during the recent IPL provoked a furious response from Australian legend Shane Warne. Dixit made a late order for Rajasthan Royals to play their game with Chennai Super Kings on a different wicket.
The change to a completely differently prepared surface didn't suit Rajasthan who lost the match. Warne, as Royals' captain, reacted furiously to the enforced move and his public outburst against Dixit and his strange move Shane $50,000 worse off. But that appeared to be the way Dixit operated. He made a unilateral decision and others had to cope with it, although i've never fully understood why he forced his own representative side to be disadvantaged on that day.....