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Impasse between Indian cricket board and TV rights holder Nimbus

The Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI), which reportedly terminated its domestic and international broadcast rights contract with Nimbus Communications yesterday (12 December) is still yet to issue an official statement on the matter.

TV marketing company Nimbus, meanwhile, has only confirmed "that it has acted in compliance of its contractual obligations and variations agreed between the parties from time to time."

Meanwhile, media speculation suggests Nimbus had failed to pay the 50% advance to the BCCI for the recent England and West Indies cricket series - a failure which has resulted in a premature conclusion of its TV rights contract.

In January 2010 Nimbus paid INR 2,000 crore (then $436 million) for the four year TV rights to BCCI matches – the second consecutive rights deal between the parties, first teamed in early 2006. However, Nimbus apparently now owes the BCCI nearly INR 100 crore.

Following a meeting in Delhi on 11 December, India's cricket board reportedly agreed to end the partnership, which would see Nimbus forfeit $388 million in bank guarantees.

Nimbus, which broadcasts in India via its Neo Cricket channel, had reportedly requested a delay in payment which the board had refused.

Despite the furore, Neo Cricket has broadcast the first day of the Ranji Trophy match between Gujarat and Tamil Nadu.

A BCCI official has been cited by ESPN as saying the board will begin discussions with Nimbus soon to ensure that Ranji Trophy games can be aired until the end of the tournament on 23 January.

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