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Sri Lanka Cricket wants more time

Sri Lanka Cricket has called for more time to assess plans to restructure the ICC before they are discussed at a meeting next week.

The "position paper", which was shown to ICC full member nations on January 9, would give India, England and Australia guaranteed seats on a four-man executive committee as well as immunity from relegation in a proposed two-tier Test structure.

The ICC executive board meets next Tuesday and Wednesday, with the paper set to form the key part of the agenda - but the Sri Lankan governing body insists more time is needed.

A statement read: "The SLC Executive Committee met today (23rd January) and the Draft F&CA Commercial Rights Working Group Position Paper was taken up for discussion.

"The Executive Committee agreed to write to the president of the International Cricket Council (ICC) and inform them the unanimous view of the Executive Committee of Sri Lanka Cricket is that the said position paper needs to be deferred and reconsidered on a future date.

"The Executive Committee further decided to discuss with the general membership of SLC also at a future date."

Cricket South Africa has already voiced its objections to the document, calling it "fundamentally flawed" and "in breach of the ICC Constitution", although Cricket New Zealand has reportedly suggested the proposals could be in the best interests of the game.

Reports regarding the paper only surfaced last weekend, with its wide remit of recommendations ranging from scrapping the Future Tours Programme (FTP), in favour of a two-tier structure, to remodelling how revenue is distributed amongst the ICC's members.

The key proposal, however, is the formation of the four-man ExCo, on which the England and Wales Cricket Board (ECB), Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) and Cricket Australia (CA) board members would all be guaranteed a place and would elect the fourth member.

The powers of the proposed executive committee would supersede those of the ICC's executive board - a panel in which all the full-member nations sit to agree major decisions - effectively reducing the control of the other nations.

The controversial proposal has been met with "extreme concern" from the union representing international players.

The Federation of International Cricketers' Association (FICA) chairman Paul Marsh believes the proposals in the document will serve only to widen the gap between the 'big three' countries of England, India and Australia and the rest of the world.

He called on the other seven full-member nations to vote out the proposal next week or be left to "wither on the vine".

"After reviewing the working group's proposal, the FICA board and our members are extremely concerned about the future of international cricket," Marsh said in a statement posted on the Australian Cricketers' Association website.

"This proposal is designed to vest control of the game in the three boards of India, Australia and England.

"It is not in the best interests of the global game and we have real fears that it will only serve to strengthen the 'big three' countries whilst the rest are left to wither on the vine.

"The game deserves far better than this and all within FICA call on the other seven ICC board members to reject this proposal at next week's board meeting. The future of the game depends on them doing so."