Cricket West Indies (CWI) has come good on their promise and has repaid the England Cricket Board (ECB) the US$3M (TT$20.2m) loan that the organisation got in May to help settle players' outstanding salaries.
This was revealed by the Chief Executive Officer (CEO) of CWI Johnny Grave in an interview with Guardian Media Sports yesterday.
According to Grave: "We have received our US$7M from the International Cricket Council (ICC) as our normal revenue share which each board member gets and the ECB has been paid off."
As part of the agreement, the funds were to be paid by the ICC directly to the ECB with the balance coming to CWI. Back in May, Grave was quoted in the Nation News as saying: "We agree, we got a three-million-dollar advance of our ICC distribution that was given to us by ECB. It’s a short-term interest-free advance because its due to be paid back in full in July, directly by ICC to ECB, and will be deducted from the money we get."
The loan from the ECB came at a time that caused controversy for CWI and president Ricky Skerritt. The board was accused of agreeing to tour England during the COVID-19 pandemic because of the loan given to them by ECB. Some went further to suggest that the loan was given to CWI in return for support to Colin Graves the ECB chairman who is vying to become the chairman of the ICC.
When news broke that it was the ICC who guaranteed the loan those rumours were dispelled. According to Grave a while back: "In early May when we received it, we weren’t discussing it at all because the situation in the UK was not the state that it is now. So, I guarantee you it’s not linked in any way shape, or form to our touring or not touring.”
CWI went to England because after they knocked at the ICC door for the early disbursal of the next instalment of members' revenue shares, it was not possible. The administrative process at ICC’S end was taking the time and that is when ECB chipped in and agreed to provide an interest-free loan to CWI.
Skerritt has also denied that the loan ensured CWI’s backing for Colin Graves. He mentioned that the loan was a helping hand given to CWI because of their financial situation that was made from bad to worst because of the COVID-19 situation.
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.
Skerritt, who became West Indies president in 2019 replacing Dave Cameron said the only pre-condition set for the tour was for the safety and security of his players and once that was assured, the tour went ahead as it was part of the ICC FTP agreement and the World Test Championship.