Indian Premier League 2009 February 16, 2009

Suspended IPL players seek compensation

Cricinfo staff


Kamran Akmal and Sohail Tanvir could potentially return to the Rajasthan Royals © AFP
 

The four Pakistan players whose contracts have been "suspended" by the IPL have appealed to the President of Pakistan, Asif Ali Zardari, to compensate them for the loss in earnings brought about by the government's decision to not allow them to travel to India to take part.

Though the sports ministry of Pakistan had allowed the players to travel across the border for the tournament, the foreign ministry barred them from doing so, reportedly over concerns about the players' security in India. The cooling of relations between the Indian and Pakistan governments after the Mumbai attacks last year has had sporting implications too: India cancelled their January tour to Pakistan, hockey teams from both sides have scrapped visits and the latest was Pakistan not letting ICL and IPL players cross the border.

Six other Pakistani players had their contracts terminated by their franchises before the recent IPL auction. But Sohail Tanvir and Kamran Akmal of the Rajasthan Royals, Umar Gul of the Kolkata Knight Riders and Misbah-ul-Haq of the Bangalore Royal Challengers have only had their contracts suspended, thereby leaving the door open for a potential return.

These players have sent a letter to Zardari requesting him to "sort out some kind of compensation" for the loss in earnings due to the travel bar. "They have sent a request because they feel they are losing out on potential earnings due to reasons beyond their control," a player who was due to be auctioned at the IPL this year told Cricinfo.

"It is an issue because there are fairly big contracts for players from Pakistan. Some of them did well last year so to not be allowed to go has hurt them," said the player.

Though no official word has come from the president, it is believed that the request is being considered: one of the options is to pay them part compensation on what remains of their contracts. But the danger is that it sets a precedent for other players who might be affected, such as those who play in the ICL, who have also been told they cannot travel.