BBC BLOGS - Mihir Bose

Archives for November 2008

What now for India and England?

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Mihir Bose | 17:07 UK time, Friday, 28 November 2008

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The first response to terrorism has always been that those who commit evil must not deflect us from pursuing our normal way of life.

Nobody can deny the horrors that have unfolded in Mumbai. It is a city I shall always call Bombay and the one where I grew up. For me to witness the events of the last few days on television in places I have known so well has been heartbreaking.

I could not see the pictures of the Taj Mahal Palace hotel without thinking of the Sea Lounge, where I spent so much of my teenage years gazing out to the Arabian Sea while consuming pineapple cake and sweet lime and soda - a great drink in a hot country.

The question is do these dastardly attacks justify calling off a cricket tour? And if the answer is yes, what does it say about our attitude to terrorism?

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Platini dismisses conspiracy theory

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Mihir Bose | 14:51 UK time, Thursday, 27 November 2008

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Some time ago Uefa president Michel Platini claimed clubs like Manchester United and Chelsea were in effect cheating their way to victories on the back of their large debts.

He said he was extremely worried by the huge debts of some English clubs, who he felt needed to show more financial control and greater transparency.

To many observers, particularly those in the British media, all this seemed part of some dastardly Platini scheme to impose greater control on football clubs. They were convinced he had particularly targeted English clubs.

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French look to put the boot in

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Mihir Bose | 16:19 UK time, Wednesday, 26 November 2008

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Sport has always been subject to government intervention. And why shouldn't it be? Sport is part of society and we are a society ruled by laws.

True, unlike France or Italy, or for that matter the USA, the British government's role in sport is probably the least controlling of the developed countries, but this is not to say it never interferes.

Take English football, for instance. Under normal laws of insolvency, all creditors are treated equally. But with football, certain creditors enjoy privileged status. For example, not only is an insolvent club required to pay its players all they are owed - note only players, not other club employees - it must also settle its debts with other clubs. If these conditions are not met, then the insolvent club cannot continue to compete.

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Location of 2012 shooting venue causes consternation

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Mihir Bose | 13:43 UK time, Friday, 21 November 2008

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Bisley is out, and Woolwich is not quite in, so a third shooting venue for 2012 Olympics could be on the cards.

That seems to be the situation following an examination by business consultants KPMG on how Olympic costs could be reduced by changing venues.

The consultants looked at four temporary venues affecting equestrianism, basketball, shooting and badminton. After the Olympic Board meeting this week a press release was issued stating that equestrianism and basketball would not be moved, but nothing has been said so far about shooting. And as far as badminton is concerned, I understand negotiations are going on for a move to Wembley.

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Lords lunch proves unpalatable for Brooking

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Mihir Bose | 18:37 UK time, Thursday, 20 November 2008

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Did a lunch at the House of Lords a year ago sow the seeds for last week's public row over youth development in English football, a row so well chronicled by Radio 5 Live? If so, what might seem a small thing has had huge consequences.

Those sitting down to eat were Sir Trevor Brooking and Lord Mawhinney. The two could not be more important figures in the English game. Brooking is the Football Association's director of football. Mawhinney is chairman of the Football League. The latter, eager to discuss a problem that had been festering for more than a year, had been the one to issue the invitation.

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West Ham's stadium plans set to change

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Mihir Bose | 15:40 UK time, Monday, 17 November 2008

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The credit crunch means West Ham's plans to move to the Parcelforce site near the old Boleyn ground, let alone the even longer shot of the Olympic Stadium, may now be ditched.

I am told a third plan winning great favour at board level is to extend the east stand and build around the corners of the ground, so increasing the capacity from the present 34,000 to about 50,000.

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Shorter games, long-running concerns for English cricket

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Mihir Bose | 19:03 UK time, Friday, 14 November 2008

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It is tempting to see the meeting in India on Saturday between Giles Clarke, Chairman of the England and Wales Cricket Board, and Lalit Modi, the Indian Cricket Board Vice-President and the man who runs the Indian Premier League, as a summit that will determine who runs world cricket.

That would be over-blowing it. The fact is Indians and particularly Indian money run world cricket, and there is nothing anybody can do to alter it.

Clarke's ambition is to make sure the ECB gets on the Indian cricket gravy train - in the same way that Australia and South Africa have.

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India reverse roles with Test win over Australia

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Mihir Bose | 15:13 UK time, Monday, 10 November 2008

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A Test series win, even one as emphatic as India's over Australia, does not change the cricket world.

Yet this series has exploded so many cricketing myths that it has resonance beyond the actual results on the field of play.

The first question to be asked is does this result mean that the near 20-year dominance of cricket by Australia is coming to an end?

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Twenty20 train leaves England behind

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Mihir Bose | 08:53 UK time, Monday, 3 November 2008

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Twenty20 cricket is a business, just ask Chris Gayle.

Post-match press conferences, especially those where $20m has been at stake, are not occasions for wonderful insights and profound thoughts. But Gayle, the winning captain of the Stanford Superstars, made two observations which went to the heart of what went on in Antigua this past week.

The first was that winning the multi-million dollar match meant more to him and his team than winning any Test match. When asked to compare the win over England with a Test match one, you should have seen the look on his face - 'Are you kidding?' it said.

Make no mistake, Gayle is proud of his West Indian heritage, but the money mattered and his team were not ashamed to acknowledge that.

"Twenty20 cricket is business," he said.

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