LAHORE - Pakistan has been elevated to the status of the fourth big power after India, England and Australia in terms of the percentage of revenue to be received from the International Cricket Council (ICC) in the next eight years from broadcasting and other rights on ICC fixtures.
According to the PCB official, the Pakistan Cricket Board (PCB) claimed to have made ‘extraordinarily significant gains’ at the ICC annual meeting at Melbourne on Thursday. “Of the three major concessions that PCB chairman Najam Sethi was able to secure to Pakistan’s great advantage are: After N Srinivasan’s election as the first ICC chairman in a landslide, India has officially turned the Memorandum of Understandings (MOUs) signed earlier this year with regard to six rubbers between the two nations, four of these to be hosted by the PCB in the UAE or Pakistan with mutual consent, into binding agreements straightaway. The six tours are now part of the Future Tours Programme (FTP) and are to be played from 2015 to 2023,” he added.
Another major achievement was the ICC agreeing Thursday to grant Pakistan the fourth rank after the ‘Big-3’ – India, England and Australia – in terms of the percentage of revenue to be received from the ICC in the next eight years from broadcasting and other rights on ICC fixtures.
The third big recognition is, the ICC confirming Pakistan to get the position of the global body’s president for one year with effect from June 2015.
This is a sea change from the situation when Pakistan stood utterly isolated when Najam Sethi was reappointed as the PCB chairman by the patron, Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif in the second week of February.
PCB chairman Najam Sethi said from Melbourne: “The PCB has organised itself and planned to get maximum advantage for Pakistan cricket from an extremely precarious position. We have accomplished all our objectives. And I am positive that in the times to come, Pakistan cricket shall greatly benefit from what the PCB has been able to obtain for it today.”
India suspended all bilateral series with Pakistan in the wake of 2008 terrorist attacks on Mumbai, which New Delhi blamed on militants based across the border. The Pakistan team did tour India for a short limited over series in December 2012-January 2013 but a full series was not agreed by the Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI).
Pakistan has not hosted any international cricket since terrorist attacks on the Sri Lankan team bus in March 2009. When the series goes ahead it will mark the biggest success for Pakistan in recent years after a prolonged isolation at the international level due to security fears. The cricket matches between Pakistan and India are widely seen as the most sought after in cricket globally, with billions watching them on television around the world.