Melbourne: Cricket Australia’s decision to set up new Big Bash teams is draining resources from the grass-roots competitions and programs that underpin Australian cricket.
A grim financial forecast from Cricket Australia shows a reduction in its operating budget of between 5 -7 percent.
This has resulted in a decline in contributions to the states while they are plunging money and energy into preparing for the Big Bash`s December launch date, a newspaper reports.
A Cricket Australia spokesman said “judicious belt-tightening” was behind the abolition of the Cricket Australia Cup and the women’s Second-XI competition. Other elite programs for boys and girls are also under pressure.
Cricket Victoria and Cricket NSW have each received a one million dollars establishment grant because Melbourne and Sydney will each have two Big Bash teams.
But Cricket Victoria is bracing for the loss of its major sponsor, DEC.
There will be no new broadcast money for the first two seasons of the Big Bash competition, and India`s decision not to release players for the Australian league makes the rights less appealing in the lucrative subcontinent market.