PCB faces inevitable shake-up

“PCB is now ready to operate independently” Former Pakistan captain Hanif Mohammad ILLUSTRATION: SAMAD SIDDIQUI

The ICC’s Full Council meeting that culminated the body’s annual conference in Hong Kong yesterday gave its members until the end of 2012 to implement free elections, ending political appointments across all boards.

The Pakistan Cricket Board (PCB) currently has the country’s president as its patron-in-chief who has the power to nominate the chairman. This setup will be heavily affected following the amendment in the ICC constitution.

Sri Lanka and Bangladesh are the two other countries with similar set-ups.

A new future

However, the fresh directives by the sport’s governing body are going to change fortunes of Pakistan cricket, according to former cricketers and administrators.

“A politics-free PCB will be a very good change,” legendary batsman Hanif Mohammad told The Express Tribune.

“I am witnessing government’s interference since it was formed in the early 1950s.

“At that the time the board needed the government’s assistance but now it’s ready to operate independently,” said the former captain.

Meanwhile, former Test cricketer Iqbal Qasim also backed the move but hinted at difficulties the board would face while implementing the change.

“Definitely, an independent body can work better for game’s welfare,” said the former spinner.

Karachi City Cricket Association President Sirajul Islam Bukhari also pointed out the obstacles.

“It will be very difficult to implement the change,” said the veteran cricket administrator.

“But in the long run it is very good for our cricket’s future. We will definitely improve as a cricketing nation.”

Former PCB executive Arif Abassi said the amendment was the need of the hour.

“It should have been made years ago,” said Abassi. “The new system will help find competent people to run our cricketing affairs which is a good sign.”

Senate committee endorses decision

Meanwhile, the Senate Standing Committee on Sports (SSCS) also supported the amendment.

“We are ready to help the PCB in bringing these reforms,” said Tahir Mashaadi, a member of the SSCS.

“Sports should be free of politics and we support the amendment.”

Published in The Express Tribune, July 1st, 2011.


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