ISLAMABAD: Dejected over the worst-ever defeat of Pakistan at the hands of fast-rising Bangladesh, former president of the International Cricket Council (ICC) Ehsan Mani has laid emphasis on making changes to Pakistan cricket structure as well as the country’s cricket governing body.
Professionals should be entrusted with the job of handling affairs of the Pakistan Cricket Board (PCB), maintained the former ICC president while talking to Dawn here on Sunday in connection with Pakistan whitewash at the hands of Bangladesh which he attributed to incumbent PCB set-up.
“I don’t want to pinpoint individuals. My only point of view is that the PCB is in need of a major overhaul,” emphasised Ehsan when asked about roles of journalists Najam Sethi and Shakeel Sheikh in the affairs of the PCB.
Stating that there was a need for paying special attention to the domestic cricket structure, Ehsan who served the world’s cricket governing body from 2003 to 2006 also expressed fear for future of Pakistan cricket.
“We have to make a five-year plan besides focusing on school, college and club cricket,” he said before referring to the Australian model which he said helped Australia fill the gap perfectly when top Australian cricketers retired.
“But, what is going on here? There has been no focus on domestic cricket,” he bemoaned and went on to say that the greenshirts were one of the worst fielding sides in world cricket.
“Probably, we have been on top in dropping catches in this World Cup. This is high time for us to focus on fielding department as well,” lamented the former head of the ICC who never shied away from slamming India, Australia and England in connection with the ‘Big Three’ issue at the world’s cricket governing body.
Adhering to his previous rock-solid stance, Ehsan said: “I still believe that Pakistan didn’t make a wise decision in accepting the ‘Big Three’.
“Instead of accepting it, we should have challenged the case before the court of law,” he said while pinpointing that India would be playing 72 home matches while Pakistan will have only 32 matches in the coming six years.
“We should have been given around 60 matches (Tests, ODIs and T20s) in the next six years,”
Ehsan maintained, adding that five ICC member countries including Pakistan, West Indies, Bangladesh, Zimbabwe and Sri Lanka were in desperate financial need in addition to adequate quality cricket.
“I’m disappointed with some of the West Indian players who instead of playing for their country opted to play in the IPL. They are doing so because of money,” he held.
Published in Dawn,