Pakistan Cricket Board (PCB) has barred cricket experts and ex-players who are working for the cricket board to do commentary during official matches on television.
The ban was imposed after PCB has faced severe criticism for allowing chief selector Haroon Rasheed and selector Azhar Khan to commentate during the national super eight T-20 tournament recently held in Faisalabad. This criticism was followed when the PCB allowed its bowling coach Muhammad Akram to also commentate during the recent Pakistan-Zimbabwe series.
According to a senior official of PCB, strict instructions were issued by the Chairman PCB Shahryar Khan that no former player who is on the PCB’s payroll will commentate in a match as it represented a conflict of interest in many ways. He said “The board has realised it was a mistake to allow Haroon or even Akram to sit as commentators and this will not happen again”. A revised media policy is under its way for all the contracted players and for other members of the national team. The official said “In recent times a number of these players have come and sought permission from the board to work for television channels during a series after first committing to the assignment”.
The official clarifies that the PCB will only give permission for special cases otherwise the primary job of the contracted player and national team players was to focus on their game. A reliable source in the PCB said that one of the clauses in the central contract which caused differences between players and the Board relates to media appearances by cricketers for different channels during major events and bilateral series. Contracted players like Saeed Ajmal, Muhammad Hafeez, Azhar Ali and a few others all appeared on different channels for handsome fees during the World Cup as experts.