Former India captain and legendary batsman Sunil Gavaskar said on Thursday he was ready to become interim president of the Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) as proposed by the Supreme Court. "Mr. N.Srinivasan is innocent till proven guilty. I cannot pass an opinion on what Supreme Court feels as I am not a legal man. But as an opener I am ready for any challenge," Gavaskar said. (Also read: Supreme wants Gavaskar to be BCCI president)
The Supreme Court on Thursday proposed that Gavaskar or any other former cricketer of his stature should take over as the interim president of the BCCI replacing incumbent Narayanaswami Srinivasan. (Related: Dhoni lied to inquiry panel, petitioner tells Supreme Court)
Gavaskar said that if the apex court is reposing faith in him he should be able to carry out the role. "If the highest court is reposing this faith in me, I'll be happy to do what they tell me to do. As an opening batsman, you must be ready for all kinds of challenges. Will do everything to the best of my abilities," he said. (Read: Gavaskar ready for any challenge)
Gavaskar also said that he was ready to forego his lucrative contract with the BCCI as a commentator if he was asked to take the post. "I am ready to give up my contract if I am asked to do so by the Supreme Court," he said.
Asked about Supreme Court's proposal to bar Super Kings and Rajasthan Royals from participating in the IPL, Gavaskar said that keeping away the two franchises will not clean cricket from corruption. "Any cricket lover will feel sad if Chennai doesn't play IPL. They have given a lot of joy to fans. Not having IPL is not going to help. When match-fixing cropped up in 1999-2000, no one said to stop Test cricket. There is no guarantee that with the strongest of measures you can stop corruption," he said. (Suggested read: People have lost faith in IPL, says Lalit Modi)
West Bengal sports minister Madan Mitra on Thursday batted for former India captain Sourav Ganguly to take over as the country's cricket board chief, hours after the Supreme Court proposed cricket legend Sunil Gavaskar as its interim president replacing incumbent N. Srinivasan. "Who better that Sourav? Sourav means clean cricket, Sourav means youth and energy. If the SC wants to know about Sourav's credentials for the post, the people of Bengal will vouch for that by hitting the streets," Mitra told media persons. (Srinivasan will step aside, BCCI's offer to Supreme Court)
"Sourav symbolises integrity, he played cricket for so many years but never ever did his name crop up in any kind of fixing or the like. There is no better choice than him," added Mitra.
Making scathing remarks against Srinivasan, a bench headed by Justice AK Patnaik proposed the name of former cricketer and commentator Sunil Gavaskar to head the Board of Control for Cricket in India during the pendency of the case in the apex court. While Gavaskar said he was ready for the "challenge", another former India captain Bishan Singh Bedi suggested that BCCI's ex-chief Shashank Manhohar should replace Srinivasan. (Related: 'Ganguly best person to become BCCI president')