PCB in middle of media wars over T10 League

LAHORE –  The Pakistan Cricket Board (PCB) is in middle of media wars over T10 league as the PCB Sunday rejected another news by an English daily, terming it ‘biased’ one.

The PCB spokesman clarified that when the PCB chairman Najam Sethi made his first statement regarding the T10 League, there was a valid reason for withholding support from the tournament. “At that time, no one from the T20 league had contacted the PCB for its support. The board had no idea of its format, scheduled dates, ownership or sponsors, therefore, the possibility of some conflict of interest with the PSL could not be ruled out.

“Later, after the sponsor of the league contacted us and gave full details and disclosures, the PCB’s Board of Governors determined that there was no conflict of interest with the PSL,” he added.

The spokesman said originally, the date of the tournament was set in early February just before the PSL. This was not acceptable to the PCB. Then the organisers agreed to change their schedule and brought the tournament to mid December 2017, which was acceptable to the PCB. “The organisers wanted the PCB to issue NOCs to Pakistan players free of cost, like it’s done for other boards. But since no reciprocity was involved in their case, the PCB demanded a hefty fee in exchange and obtained $400,000.

“There was no communication from the Emirates Cricket Board (ECB). Later, the ECB formally sought our support in exchange for their continuing support to PSL and PCB. The ECB also agreed to reduce the cost of their venues for PSL by 10 per cent, thereby reducing our cost by over $250,000,” he added.

He said the T10 organisers were seeking the same advertising sponsors as the PSL. But the PCB compelled them to contract only with those, who were not tied to the PSL so that our revenue base would not be depleted. “We consulted with all PSL franchises. Two had reservations. These were dropped after we explained the situation and satisfied everyone that there was no conflict of interest with PCB.

He said they had no plan for Anti-Corruption security. “We compelled the T10 organisers to pay the PCB’s ACU for providing oversight along with the ICC’s ACU.”

PCB chairman Najam Sethi said: “The interests of PCB and Pakistan cricketers have been uppermost at all time. How can I ever agree to supporting anything that is against the interest of PSL that we have built up with such determination and hard work against all odds?”

The spokesman said that PCB hoped that the certain media group would stop its hurtful campaign against the PCB and deliver a neutral/unbiased perspective on the T10 League and PCB’s involvement in the tournament. “It is surprising that how a media group, that promotes Indian films and Indian Premier League, can object to the involvement of one Indian investor only in the T10 League and tar a national Pakistani brand like PSL,” he added.



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