PCB faces fire on contract policy

<img border='0' align='left' title=' ' src='http://www.ndtv.com/convergence/images/thumbnail/ver1/p/pcb-logo.jpg' class='caption'> Former cricket stars on Saturday berated the Pakistan Cricket Board for omitting leading performers from the list of centrally contracted players.

Updated: March 21, 2010 13:44 IST
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Former cricket stars on Saturday berated the Pakistan Cricket Board for omitting leading performers from the list of centrally contracted players.

The former players were also irate about PCB's decision to demote some players to the stipends list and awarding central contracts to players, who did not play for the national team last year.

PCB yesterday announced a list of 18 players, who were awarded central contracts in three categories, dropping the names of Mohammed Yousuf and Younus Khan.

The Board also named 19 players, who will get a stipend of Rs 75,000 per month.

"I don't know what criteria has been followed while finalising the list, but it is amazing that players like Hasan Raza, Sohail Tanvir, Rao Iftikhar, Muhammad Sami, Imran Nazir have been omitted while other promising youngsters like Sarfaraz Ahmed, Khalid Latif and Khurrum Manzoor are now being given stipends," former Test batsman Basit Ali said.

The secretary of the Karachi City Cricket Association Siraj-ul-Islam Bukhari said he could not understand how the Board could give just stipends to players like Sarfaraz Ahmed, Latif or Manzoor who were the future of Pakistan cricket.

"We will lodge a strong protest with the Board and we want to know in the governing council what criteria was adopted for giving contracts and stipends," Bukhari said.

The PCB included three players -- Muhammad Hafeez, Abdul Rehman and Wahab Riaz -- in the contracts list although they did not play a single match for Pakistan in 2009.

The contracts committee, headed by chief operating officer Wasim Bari demoted Sarfaraz, Latif and Manzoor to the stipends list although the three performed well when given the opportunity to play for the national team.

Manzoor in his last Test innings scored 80 runs in Australia and has played in seven Tests and three ODIs in 2009 and 2010.

Latif played four ODIs and two T20 matches and Sarfaraz seen as the successor to Kamran Akmal appeared in one Test, one ODI and two T20 matches in the same period.

Interestingly, while the Board said on Friday it had awarded contracts and stipends to leading performers of the domestic season it has ignored players like Muhammad Sami and Hasan Reza who have had outstanding seasons for their teams.

Sami was sent to Australia for the Test series and he did well in the Sydney match besides captaining Karachi to the Quaid-e-Azam Trophy title in the domestic season.

Chief selector Mohsin Khan distanced himself from the decision on which players would get contracts and stipends.

"The national selection committee had nothing to do with the final selection of players this was done by the contracts committee of the Board," he said.

Former Test player Moin Khan also slammed the decision to omit Imran Nazir and Rao Iftikhar.

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