PCB look to ICC for help after suffering huge monetary losses
Chairman of Pakistan Cricket Board (PCB) Shaharyar announced last week that he intended to request the ICC to set up a fund. The PCB, he says, have apparently incurred huge losses over the past few years. Due to the sensitive diplomatic situations in the country of Pakistan, the scheduled home matches to be held in Pakistan have routinely been shifted to other locations leading to a stagnation of the development of cricket infrastructure within the country.
The last international team hosted by Pakistan were Zimbabwe in 2015. This has been the trend since the terrorist attack on the Sri Lankan team bus in 2009. Even a bilateral series involving India and Pakistan, supposed to attract big money if one looks at the history of such matches, has not been organised since the terror attacks in Mumbai on 2008. The cricket boards of both countries have made an effort to revive the practice os such games but the strained political and diplomatic relationships between the two countries seem to prevent this from happening.
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“We want to use this special fund to develop and promote cricket in Pakistan,” Sahahryar told Press Trust of India prior to his departure to London where he represented Pakistan at the annual ICC meeting in Edinburgh. “We will request the ICC and member countries to put aside a small percentage of its income from ICC events for this special fund for Pakistan cricket,” he added.
Since this problem began, Pakistan has been forced to hold its home matches in mostly neutral venues and UAE is the one country that has played host the most. However, the Arabs are proving to be quite expensive for the PCB and have further added to their losses. To repair this scenario, the PCB decided to shift its “home venue” to Sri Lanka right before its series against the West Indies team. The plan, however, did not work out as Sri Lanka is prone to heavy rains during the scheduled time for the series in September-October.
Pakistan has no rights for holding major ICC affiliated tournaments till 2023 owing to the falling security standards of the country. The PCB Chairman recognised this problem and said,“The security situation throughout the world is not stable but things are improving in Pakistan. But it is very difficult to say for certainty when we can host international teams at home. We don’t want to take decisions in haste and regret it later.” He also said that the country and the board are losing “big money” because of this incursion.