Thursday September 29, 2022

Dept cricket’s abolition: Ex-cricketers split over Imran’s decision

By Our Correspondent
April 28, 2019

KARACHI: Prime Minister Imran Khan, who is Patron-in-Chief of the Pakistan Cricket Board (PCB), has told the PCB Chairman Ehsan Mani to abolish departments’ role in cricket structure and restrict the domestic first-class tournaments to six provincial teams.

Preparations for new model of provincial cricket are continuing by abolishing role of departmental teams in the country. The prime minister wants a system of regional cricket and in this regard a task force is working for bringing amendment to the constitution of PCB. The prime minister has directed to form a plan consisting upon six provincial teams.

Imran Khan, who led the Pakistan to the 1992 World Cup glory, wants to introduce regional cricket system in the country and wants not only to reduce number of teams, rather these should be made limited at regional level by abolishing departmental teams completely in order to improve standard of first class cricket. He wants to see standard of first class cricket at regional level.

Earlier, the PCB had prepared a presentation a few weeks ago in which some departmental teams were included along with regional teams. The prime minister rejected it, saying that departmental teams should not be included in the structure of first class cricket of the country.

At present, there are eight departments and eight regions which are taking part in the domestic cricket of Pakistan.

Ramiz Raja is great supporter of the prime minister’s system.

Former Test cricketer Zaheer Abbas said the system of departmental cricket was introduced by Abdul Hafeez Kardar and Pakistan cricket got great cricketers through this system and it provided great benefit to country.

Former captain Rashid Latif said that departmental cricket should be continue, but he strongly oppose the mechanism that was being adopted in this regard. He said that presently no department was giving any permanent job to players and due to this the players would be kicked out any time from those departments.

Former wicketkeeper and present coach Moin Khan said that cricket is flourishing in Pakistan due to departmental cricket and therefore, it is not a wise decision to abolish it. He suggested the prime minister not to abolish it, and rather remove faults in this system.

Former Pakistan captain Sulman Butt said that if the region can give attractive salaries and this system benefit the game then it should be implemented. “We are making six teams to introduce a system like Australia,” he said.

Salman Butt said the population of Australia is 20.5 million, while the population of Pakistan is 230 million.

He said that Australia is a welfare state where the government supports unemployed people, but who will help unemployed people in Pakistan? He said that a big fault of regional cricket is that there is no merit in it, while teams of departments are made on merit.