PCB needs to get its act together

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THE NATION, Islamabad, 16th SEPTEMBER 2013:- The Pakistan Cricket Board (PCB) should find root causes behind team’s inconsistency and should dig deep to remove the unpredictable tag. Pakistan’s poor performances are not because they don’t have reliable players or face financial hazards. The simple reason behind their below par showing is lack of international cricket. Selectors select the team under pressure from certain quarters instead keeping the merit and conditions in mind.
Cricket playing nations around the world prepare backups on regular basis and arranging home and away series for their A teams. The players who suffer issues with their form got opportunity to get back their rhythm by playing on A tours. Australia, India, England, New Zealand, South Africa, West Indies and even Bangladesh have a very busy schedule of playing regular cricket at A level but only Pakistani selectors and board is unaware of this simple formula.
The PCB is not sending A team for international tours sighting financial crunch. Recent tour of A team was also called off as it costs PCB around Rs10 million and board didn’t have funds for sending A teams for much needed international tours, which could prove beneficiary be both to players and the country. But at one hand, the PCB is blaming poor finances for sending players abroad and on the other hand previous PCB chairman Zaka Ashraf plundered national wealth with both hands and a whopping amount of Rs1 million was spent only for the inauguration of cricket stadium in Naudero and a plane was chartered from Karachi to take VIPs to Naudero, which costs the PCB Rs5 million.
Who is responsible for abusing the PCB’s finances at the cost of the future of the country? Who could dare to ask Zaka to explain why and on what grounds he wasted such precious amount on only one destination. Why and on whose behest the PCB invested such huge amount of money for constructing stadium at such a far flung area, where even club level cricket is impossible? The PCB should have given top priority to constructing stadium in the capital, which after a lapse of almost two years is still nowhere.
Islamabad is considered as one of the most peaceful and relatively ideal place for conducting international cricket. Had the deposed PCB chief Zaka instead of appeasing his former boss put the country first, the stadium could have been completed till now. But Zaka didn’t have the time from his very busy international schedule as he preferred to attend each and every meeting and team’s tour on the PCB’s expense.
The National Cricket Academy at Gaddafi Stadium is equipped with world’s best equipment but hardly any activity is being witnessed there. Coaches are being paid in bulks but the PCB getting zero results. In these times when international teams’ are not visiting Pakistan, it was the ideal time NCA could have worked round the clock in grooming the raw talent.
Najam Sethi, although doesn’t have any experience of running the cricket affairs but he has the wisdom. Instead of paying heed to PCB bureaucracy, he must appoint advisors who could help him in dealing with day to day affairs and help the PCB in producing players of international calibre.

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