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March 22, 2020

PCB suffers Rs200 million loss due to early end of PSL-5

Sports

March 22, 2020

ISLAMABAD: Wasim Khan, Chief Executive Officer (CEO) Pakistan Cricket Board (PCB) claimed losing Rs 200 million in wake of early winding up of the of Pakistan Super League (PSL) V, saying the sports in general and cricket in particular will be facing toughest challenges to regroup if by the grace of God Almighty Allah the world overcome COVID 19 in a few months’ time.

In a first ever video-conference participated by a group of journalists from all over Pakistan Saturday, Wasim said the virus had completely changed the sporting world and cricket was no exception. “Look we are facing the toughest days in sports where no one is sure as what would happen next. The coronavirus has forced sports organisers to postpone, cancel or and abruptly stop the ongoing event. After careful assessment of the situation, we also decided to postpone the PSL-V just before the start of the semi-finals. We are expecting a loss of around Rs 200 million from gate money and other support earning. We also lost the series against Bangladesh because of the threats of virus-a further loss of around three to four million dollar is expected from not hosting Bangladesh for Test and one off one-day. It is a global crises not only for sports but for every segment of society”

The PCB Chief Executive admitted that the ICC and different cricketing boards around the world would have to come up with a comprehensive plan to make up for the loss time and finance. “Though it is too early to say anything on the overall cricketing loss, if we succeed in overcoming the virus in a few month time, the ICC as well as all leading cricketing boards will have to come up with a plan to make up for the financial as well as for the administrative loss. Many cricketing series either have been postponed or delayed because of the virus. Thanks God, barring one-day tournament we have already completed out domestic cricket. Other cricket playing countries are facing even worse scenario where one after another series has either been postponed or delayed.”

Wasim said that now the PCB was looking at new sponsorship and broadcasting rights. “Bangladesh series was the last one with the old broadcasting deal. We are lucky enough that immediately we are not facing any international cricket and hopefully by the time we would have one, things In-sha-Allah would be in a better position.” About Pakistan coming international commitments in Ireland, England and Holland, he said PCB and respective boards had time at their disposal. “England are to take make their next move by May 28 and hopefully we would have better placed to decide at that time on the future commitments especially in England. Pakistan are to play England late in July. So there is enough time left for respective boards.”

Wasim criticized cricketers who used social media in criticizing their fellow players. “It is not right for an active player to speak against players inclusion in the team or not. Using social media for active cricketers to criticize players would not be tolerated. No other player not even English players are permitted to speak against players and policies. It is for cricket board to decide. We are going to make a strict policy about that shortly” Wasim Khan replied to a question on M Hafeez criticizing Sharjeel Khan’s inclusion on the national team.

Wasim said Sharjeel had done his time now. “Two and half year of complete ban and rest of suspended sentence. It is up to him to prepare himself for future international commitment. If he is unfit he has no right to claim a place on the team. He has time at his disposal to get ready for next international commitment.”

Wasim Khan said for the time being the PCB had no financial constraints and was well equipped to go ahead with their domestic and international plans. “We have no financial problems and can continue our domestic and international business as usual.”

On the domestic front, he admitted there was a lot to do. “We are to announce formation of provincial associations shortly and are going to improve the grounds standards for future national and international commitments. It will be up to the provincial association to utilize the services of ground staff the PCB had relieved which previously was working with regional associations. Coaches assessment is also on cards. We have time at our disposal and we want to use it proactively. We have already invested a lot on Pindi, Multan and making the Peshawar Stadium ready for next PSL edition.”

The PCB Chief Executive said that there were windows available to complete the PSL-V. “First is just after the T20 World Cup and second being in November. The remaining matches could well also be organized before the HBL PSL-VI. We are looking at these options considering all the relevant options under consideration. All decisions regarding PSL whether these are on finances or other matters including hosting remaining PSL matches will be taken in consultation with the owners. Since the PSL for the first time was organized in Pakistan, we were expecting a set profit and that Rs 200 million loss is from that expected amount.”

Wasim Khan defended Misbahul Haq’s poor show as a coach with Islamabad United team that finished last in the PSL-V. When asked whether PCB was happy with his coaching prowess especially the one he had shown with United this fall, he said “Look he had joined United just days ahead of the start of the PSL-V. He has improved as a coach internationally. He has been working with players twelve months around. We want Misbah to get additional experience and that was why he and others were allowed for duel jobs. Luck also matters sometimes. Islamabad United would definitely assess the situation. We will also sit with Misbah as important events are coming up and if he requires any assistant we would consider that. We would definitely assess his status after one year.”

He also hinted at taking action against all those cricketers who were guilty of acting nonsense on the field and during the course of PSL-V.

Wasim Khan rejected any chances of hosting Pakistan leg of international series on any outside venue. “Even England turned down West Indies offer. At moment no country in the world is safe from pandemic.”