Pakistan retains Shoaib Malik as captain

January 6th, 2009 - 10:07 pm ICT by IANS  

Karachi, Jan 6 (IANS) Pakistan Cricket Board (PCB) Tuesday ‘indefinitely’ extended Shoaib Malik’s tenure as Pakistan captain and also offered central contracts to 26 national cricketers.Saleem Altaf, the PCB’s chief operating officer, told reporters that Shoaib will continue as Pakistan skipper as the board believes he is currently the best man for the job. Malik, 26, was appointed for a two-year period in 2007. His tenure ended Dec 31.

Altaf also announced that new central contracts have been offered to 26 of the country’s leading cricketers.

After playing just three Twenty20 games in the last 12 months, fast bowler Shoaib Akhtar has made a stunning comeback in the list, in which he is placed in the elite ‘A’ category alongside skipper Malik, vice-captain Misbah-ul-Haq and Younis Khan. Also making a comeback on the top slab is leg-spinner Danish Kaneria.

Uncapped batsmen Umar Amin and Azhar Ali have also been included in the list but in the C category on the basis of their good showing in domestic matches. In the past, central contracts were only awarded to players who had played for Pakistan at the international level.

Altaf said all the players had been recommended for the annual contracts by the national selection committee.

“They have been picked on the basis of seniority and performances in the last 12 months,” said Altaf, the former Pakistan test pacer.

Altaf revealed that the board has increased the players’ fees for Tests to $4,400 per match. That money is paid in addition to the players’ monthly salaries.

List of players offered central contracts:
Category A (250,000 rupees per month) - Shoaib Malik, Misbah-ul-Haq, Younis Khan, Danish Kaneria, Salman Butt, Kamran Akmal, Shoaib Akhtar, Umar Gul, Shahid Afridi

Category B (175,000 rupees) - Yasir Hameed, Mohammad Hafeez, Sohail Tanvir, Faisal Iqbal

Category C (100,000) - Yasir Arafat, Abdul Rehman, Fawad Alam, Rao Iftikhar, Sohail Khan, Nasir Jamshed, Sarfraz Ahmed, Khurrum Manzoor, Saeed Ajmal, Wahab Riaz, Umar Amin, Samiullah Niazi, Azhar Ali.

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