LAHORE - Pakistan Cricket Board (PCB) Management Committee (MC) chairman Najam Sethi has said that it is the need of the hour to support ‘Big-3’ if we want to play international cricket.

Speaking at the press conference Friday here at the Gaddafi Stadium after returning from taking part in the International Cricket Council (ICC) meeting in Dubai, Sethi said: “Pakistan will support the ‘Big-3’ after its conditions will be met.”

He said that he was first informed of the ‘Big-3’ issue on January 8 and he discovered on February 8 that Bangladesh was onboard with the proposal while Pakistan and Sri Lanka remained opposed to the ‘Big-3.’  He estimated that these series would earn Pakistan approximately Rs 30 billion over the eight years. “This also allows us to now sell the broadcasting and other rights for our home series for the coming years on long-term basis,” he added.

Sethi said that all the boards including the BCCI had agreed to sign the agreements with Pakistan for next eight years. “The Indian board is part of these agreements and I am confident that we will pretty soon see the resumption of regular bilateral ties between the two countries,” he asserted.

Asked by a reporter what guarantee was there that India would adhere to these agreements, Sethi replied that if the agreements were not signed and made legally binding than the PCB would withdraw its conditional support for ‘Big-3’. “Then we will not support them but we have followed a policy where we don’t want Pakistan cricket to be isolated and alone in international cricket. I see international cricket returning to Pakistan soon.”

He said details of the eight-year agreements with every board would be signed soon. “We are in the process of signing the agreements and they contain a clause that says our home matches can be played in UAE or anywhere else which means if the security situation improves in Pakistan than we start hosting international matches soon,” he stated.

He said these agreements had a legal clause for the first time in ICC history which made it legally binding on the boards to fulfill their commitments or face damages. “The agreement do have a force majeure clause but in case this clause is evoked the concerned board has to justify pulling out of a commitment or we have the right to take them to court and seek damages,” he added.

The PCB chairman announced that the board would nominate the chairman of the executive board of the ICC in 2016 after BCCI’s two-year stint ends. According to Sethi, the PCB has reached an agreement with the cricket boards of other countries at this week’s executive board meeting of the ICC in Dubai.

“One of the decisions reached at the ICC meeting is that Pakistan will nominate the next chairman of the ICC after the BCCI takes its turn this year,” Sethi said.

Sethi also announced that Pakistan would be hosting the next meeting of the Asian Cricket Council (ACC) next year in Pakistan and he would chair that meeting.

He also announced that Pakistan in return for their conditional support to the recent changes/reforms in governance and financial model of the ICC, which gives more powers to the boards of India, Australia and England, had also entered into agreements with other boards including India for bilateral home and away series.

To a query regarding the fate of M Amir, Sethi replied that talks were ongoing with the ICC and the former bowler would play cricket soon. “A decision regarding Amir’s punishment will be taken during the next ICC meeting in June. There is no doubt that Amir will be in our national team when he is back.” Sethi added that it was his understanding that Amir’s punishment would be reduced by one year.