23 Jul

Cricket West indies (CWI) will be breathing a sigh of relief as it has repaid the England and Wales Cricket Board (ECB), the US $3m loan it borrowed in May to help settle outstanding players’ salaries.

The revelation has come from CEO of CWI Johnny Grave who told Guardian Media Sports of Trinidad that they received US $7m from the International Cricket Council (ICC) as part of normal revenue share which each board member gets and that a portion of that was used to repay the ECB.

As part of the agreement, the loan was to be repaid by the ICC directly to the ECB, with the balance going to CWI.

The loan from the ECB, came at a time that caused controversy for CWI and president Ricky Skerritt, with the board being accused of agreeing to tour England during the COVID-19 pandemic because of the loan given to them by ECB.

The issue eventually became the subject of an ICC ethics inquiry. Skerritt denied that the loan ensured CWI's backing for Colin Graves - the outgoing ECB head - for the ICC chairman's position, elections for which are due by the end of July.

Skerritt said at the time the loan was a "helping hand" given CWI's difficult financial situation, which was exacerbated by the Covid-19 pandemic. Skerritt said CWI was transparent with ICC about the need for a short-term loan, and ECB's involvement. He said it seemed to him that the issue was being "blown up" for "political" purposes only, mostly by "mischievous persons who have little genuine care for the wellbeing" of cricket.

The rumours were dispelled when it was revealed that it was the ICC, who guaranteed the loan.

John Stephenson



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