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Dhaka Tribune

Visiting ICC headquarters - a rose in the desert

Located just four minutes’ drive away from the Dubai International Cricket Stadium at Dubai Sports City, the ICC headquarters stands tall along with one of the finest cricket facilities in the world, the ICC Cricket Academy

Update : 26 Sep 2018, 11:17 PM

While travelling in UAE, any cricket lover must have an itinerary - visit the global governing body of cricket, the ICC office. 

Located just four minutes’ drive away from the Dubai International Cricket Stadium at Dubai Sports City, the ICC headquarters stands tall along with one of the finest cricket facilities in the world, the ICC Cricket Academy.

The Academy is the home ground of UAE cricket and the participating teams of the Asia Cup are also tuning up here.

The chance of visiting the ICC office came by itself after the organisation invited the touring journalists who have been covering the six-nation Asia Cup. 

Almost a three-hour long briefing involving the ICC CEO David Richardson, general manager of cricket, Geoff Allardice, and general manager of the Anti-Corruption Unit, Alex Marshall made an endeavour to put up the state of world cricket and the efforts being carried out for the globalisation of game.

Most part was boring, to be honest, the journalists were just sitting there to listen but when the general manager of the anti-corruption took the floor, it had grown some interest in the room. 

The ICC itself knew this part of the session was important as the ICC media-manager Sami Ul Hasan rushed to call a group of journalists who were taking a break from the briefings just outside the building, in the parking area to be particular.

Corruption has been a stigma to the gentlemen’s game and with the growing interest of world media in it, cases of the wrongdoings are being revealed apparently in intervals now. 

The last to rock the cricket world was in May this year, when Qatar-based channel Al Jazeera had staged a private investigation and exposed the global scale of match-fixing in cricket.

Perhaps ICC thought it was best to interact with the media on the issue, directly. 

ICC GM for the anti-corruption, Alex in his almost 20-minute long speech revealed the ins and outs of his work and of his team and emphasised on how the private leagues, mostly T20 and those don’t fall under the ICC jurisdiction, have been the chief reason behind the tarnishing image of the game. 

But the irony is that the shortest format of the game, which is considered the most important on marketing and financial grounds, is in the most vulnerable situation with regards to corruption. 

Reports suggest Dubai, the city where the ICC headquarters stand tall, has been the hub of all networks and Aj Man, a city located 50 minutes away from the UAE capital, has been a brewing ground of the private leagues to serve wrong intention.

Following the briefing and a Q/A session, the visitors formed in small groups to take a tour of the ICC office building. 

The walls were decorated with photos of legends of the game and of historic events. 

That amazing spectacle is a lifetime experience for any follower of cricket.

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