Pakistan cricket board cannot take decision on ICL players: Ijaz Butt

January 5th, 2009 - 8:11 pm ICT by IANS  

Karachi, Jan 5 (IANS) Under pressure from Indian Cricket League (ICL) players to revoke their ban, the Pakistan Cricket Board (PCB) Monday said their fate is in the hands of the International Cricket Council (ICC).Butt, a former Pakistan Test opener, told reporters in Islamabad that the PCB cannot lift the ban on the country’s ICL rebels unless the ICC sanctions the unofficial league, owned by India’s media tycoon Subhash Chandra.

Pakistan has banned 20 of its leading cricketers including former skipper Inzamam-ul-Haq, openers Imran Farhat, Imran Nazir, pacers Mohammad Sami, Rana Naved-ul-Hassan and all-rounder Azhar Mahmood and Mohammad Yousuf for their association with ICL.

The players have been demanding the right to play for the national team as well as in domestic first-class competitions but so far the PCB has been rigid in its approach towards them.

In a recent interview, former Pakistan all-rounder Abdul Razzaq alleged that the PCB is maintaining a ban on the ICL players just to please the “powerful Indian cricket board (BCCI)”.

PCB Director General, Javed Miandad, a former Pakistan captain, admitted there is a lot of pressure on the PCB to lift the ban.

However, ICL players’ future is in doubt because of the strained relations between Pakistan and India over November’s terror attack in Mumbai. The two countries have suspended bilateral sporting ties and now the ICL organisers are looking at various options to replace the Pakistani cricketers, who were playing in the league under the banner of Lahore Badshahs.

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