New Delhi:The most powerful man in Indian cricket is now the most powerful man in the domain of international cricket as well.
Sharad Pawar has taken over as the International Cricket Council (ICC) President on Thursday. He's the second Indian to head the ICC after Jagmohan Dalmiya.
"Sharad Pawar, the former President of the Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI), assumed the role of ICC President in succession to David Morgan at the ICC's Annual Conference," the ICC said in a statement.
The 69-year-old Pawar, who is also a serving union minister in the Indian government, begins a two-year term as ICC President and on taking over lauded Morgan for his "impressive innings" during the last two years.
"David Morgan has set the principles by which the ICC operates and now it is our responsibility to build on his legacy," he said.
Morgan, in turn, hoped Pawar, who has served as his ICC vice-President since 2008, would have a successful stint.
"In the past few days many people have thanked me for my contribution to cricket. All I would say is that cricket has been kind to me it has given me much more than I have given back," he said.
Pawar is the second Indian to head the ICC after Jagmohan Dalmiya, who was at the helm from 1997 to 2000.
Pawar will have the top job at an opportune time as the 4 sub-continent countries get ready to host the 2011 World Cup in 8 months time.
However, the ticklish issue is whether the former Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) President has the support of his own board.
The biggest stumbling block between Pawar and the BCCI President Shahshank Manohar is the issue of Lalit Modi.
Pawar has still been batting for the suspended IPL commissioner while the current BCCI regime is totally against Modi.
The BCCI has now embarrassed him on two occasions.
Pawar said that a failed IPL bid for Pune was made by the MD of Citycorp a company in which his family holds a stake while the BCCI said the bid was indeed in the name of the company.
And the latest is the issue of John Howard's candidature as Vice President, Pawar publicly supported him while the BCCI did the opposite at the ICC meeting.
Infighting within the BCCI is just one problem. As the ICC boss, Pawar has to take the lead in various cricketing matters. But the big question is whether he will be interested in issues such as the decline of test cricket or players choosing club over country.