LAHORE - Pakistan Cricket Board (PCB) chairman Chaudhary Zaka Ashraf Thursday said that the decision of his reinstatement by the divisional bench was a historic step in the country’s cricket.
Talking to the reporters here at the Gaddafi Stadium after being reinstated by the Islamabad High Court (IHC), Zaka said: “It is a historic decision in the history of Pakistan cricket that a court restored a PCB chief. My reinstatement is a victory of justice and a result of prayers of several PCB employees.”
He said that he was elected for four-year term and the court had restored him from July 20, 2013. “My utmost effort will be to take measures for the betterment of Pakistan cricket by taking all the stakeholders into confidence on all important cricket matters,” he added.
When asked about his future plans after his restoration as PCB chief, Zaka stated: “There are a lot of challenges Pakistan cricket has been facing and my top most priority will be to work collectively for its betterment. Being a chairman, I am under heavy load of responsibility to take on all the challenges in a decent manner and to resolve all cricket related problems in a befitting manner.”
“Cricket is a passion of the entire nation and it serves as an effective medium to forge unity and brotherhood among the people of Pakistan. We should work for the development of the game without taking into consideration and political affiliation,” he added.
“It is my desire to brief PCB patron Prime Minister M Nawaz Sharif on cricket related affairs and to seek his guidance on the team’s participation in the Asia Cup in the back drop of security issues in the host country Bangladesh,” the PCB chief said.
Zaka said that he did not seek the International Cricket Council (ICC)’s support on his suspension and removal as PCB chairman as for him, Pakistan’s respect was far supreme than anything. “I will request the ICC to give the PCB some time in announcing the team for the World Twenty20 Cup.”
The PCB chief said that Dav Whatmore was selected by a team of experts and similar procedure would be adopted in selecting the new coach of the national team. “The PCB’s cricket committee will look into the matter of hiring a new coach for Pakistan team as Dav Whatmore will be completing his stint with the team next month.”
To a query he replied that Misbahul Haq was fit enough but World Cup 2015 was far away and the inclusion of any player including the captain would be made based on his fitness and form. “In my opinion, M Hafeez is duly justifying in his role as Twenty20 captain.”
To a query regarding Najam Sethi, he said that he was a good person and had nothing against him. “Sethi also worked hard for the improvement of cricket.”
On reports that Tafazzal Rizvi, being a legal advisor of the PCB, is going to file an appeal in the Supreme Court, he replied that he had always respected the court’s decision and would do the same in case anybody went to the court.
He said he would resume his efforts for the revival of cricket ties with India as good progress was being made during his tenure on the resumption of cricket ties between the two neighbouring countries.
“I will work on resolving issues between the regional cricket associations for ensuring their smooth working and to take them in main stream for the development of cricket,” he concluded.