PCB under attack over Champions Trophy, Oval Test decisions

February 1st, 2009 - 9:45 pm ICT by IANS  

Karachi, Feb 1 (IANS) The Pakistan Cricket Board (PCB) Sunday faced severe criticism in the country following International Cricket Council’s (ICC) decisions to relocate the Champions Trophy and to award to England the controversial Oval Test.At an ICC board meeting in Perth, PCB chairman Ijaz Butt failed to defend Pakistan’s right to host the ICC Champions Trophy. The ICC decided to relocate it from Pakistan because of security fears.

The ICC also decided to reverse the result of Pakistan’s infamous Oval Test and awarded it to England as forfeiture.

Senator Enver Baig, a member of Senate sports committee, launched a scathing attack on the PCB management, saying it was incapable of safeguarding the interests of Pakistan cricket.

“The ICC decision to take away the Champions Trophy is extremely bad news for our people,” Baig told IANS Sunday. “I will blame the PCB as much as I will blame the ICC for depriving our people the right to host the tournament,” he added.

Pakistan was supposed to host the eight-nation ICC Champions Trophy in September-October this year. The tournament was originally supposed to take place last September but was postponed after five competing nations raised security apprehensions.

Baig, a member of the ruling Pakistan People’s Party, said Ijaz Butt has proved to be a failure as PCB chief.

“I have serious doubts about Mr. Butt’s ability to run Pakistan cricket properly. He has failed to resolve internal crisis in the PCB and was also unable to stand up to the ICC bosses to defend Pakistan’s case as far as the Champions Trophy and the Oval Test are concerned.”

Baig added, “The Champions Trophy decision will send very negative signals to the rest of the world,” he said. “It would put a stamp on Pakistan’s reputation as an insecure place which is totally wrong. We are a peaceful people and we love our sports.”

Pakistan’s Sports Minister Pir Aftab Shah Jilani said that the news of Champions Trophy being taken away from Pakistan was highly disappointing.

“We held the Asia Cup last year in a very successful manner and the recent ODI series against Sri Lanka also went incident-free,” he pointed out. “We don’t think there was any reason to move the tournament out of Pakistan,” added.

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