PCB clarifies domestic cricket media reports
Pakistan Cricket Board clarifies that it would be unfair to describe the announced format as mind boggling and confusing, whereas Chairman Cricket Management Committee, during the press conference held on 8th July 2002 at Gaddafi Stadium, explained the logic and reason behind the domestic format for the season 2002-03 and was very clear about what would be achieved with the revised domestic format.
It also has to be clarified that the revised domestic format was formulated after the PCB sought views and opinions of the leading former Test players and senior journalists on what could be the best domestic format for Pakistan Cricket, said Iqbal Qasim, Chairman CMC.
While addressing the press conference, the Chairman CMC had clarified and explained that by having the departments and associations play together to give a chance to the associations to play against better opposition will definitely help the associations in improving their standard, and secondly it would mean that associations of big cities like Karachi, Lahore, Rawalpindi and Peshawar etc would be able to give exposure to maximum number of players. With the amount of talent coming up all over the country today, one is confident that the associations would be able to unearth some new talent and field strong teams. The points have been clarified for the benefit of those interested in the restructuring of Pakistan Domestic Cricket.
- 25 teams of Quaid-e-Azam trophy divided into four groups, each team of three groups will play a minimum of five first class matches while one will have six matches. Two (and not) team of each will qualify for the quarter final and followed by the semifinal and final. Essentially, the finalists will play a minimum of eight to nine matches in the tournament.
- Another first Class tournament Super league is also intended to raise the standard and quality of domestic cricket. With the super league being contested on regional basis, it would mean that the best players of the departments or associations in Quaid-e-Azam trophy would get a chance to represent their provinces in the super league and play on double league basis, which means the best players will get another minimum of six/seven class games in the season.
Altogether, best players of the departments and associations will get a chance to play a minimum of 11 first class matches in the domestic season 2002-2003.
- The purpose behind having a PCB XI in Quaid-e-Azam Trophy is to give the promising players of Jr. level and those who perform outstandingly in the National Academies, a platform to play first class matches. The Board has been striving very hard to bring the talented players at the top level through tough competition. The purpose is to make first class cricket a part of the grooming of junior and outstanding prospects of the academies.
- It is explained that for relegating and promoting Associations and departments, separate tables would be maintained throughout the tournament after which the bottom placed association and department team in the tables would be relegated to the non first class "Kardar Trophy" (formerly known as Patron's Trophy Grade-II) and "Cornelius Trohpy" (formerly known as QAT Grade-II) the winners of these two tournaments will replace those teams which are relegated from the Quaid-e-Azam Trophy.
- It was pointed out that under the new format, efforts have been made to have quality cricket at Non first class level and that's why a third non first class tournament named after the PCB was being introduced. This is basically for the new teams which have been given playing rights and the teams who did not come up to the expectation last year. The Cornelius Trophy previously known as QAT- Grade-II has been turned into three day matches.
- It is stated that according to new format, the one day tournament will be held between 16 teams of the Quaid-e-Azam trophy, therefore, Quaid-e-Azam trophy should be held first, and followed by Patrons Cup. Administratively it is not possible to organize Quaid-e-Azam Trophy & Patrons Cup prior to the holy month of Ramzan.
- Under the new political system of governance in the country it was not possible to ignore the growing number of association teams. However, as soon as PCB's plan to set up provincial associations is entrusted to the provincials associations it will reduce the PCB,s responsibility. In that case PCB will organize only first class and U-19 matches. Till such time PCB has to fulfill its responsibility to organize cricket and provide opportunity at all levels throughout Pakistan, while at the same time its our endeavor to improve quality of cricket at apex level is enhanced as well.
- During the last Season, 475 matches were played. This season 444 matches will be played, which is a reduction of 31 matches.
- Umpiring: We have two panels of Umpires, GradeI and Grade II
- Grade-1 Umpires: They supervise First Class matches, Under-19 Grade-I and One Day Tournament
- Grade-II Umpires: They supervise Grade-II and Grade-III matches
- Pitches: In preparation of the new domestic circuit the PCB has got prepared quality pitches on almost all first class centers. Moreover the major centers have more than one pitch and matches have been scheduled on different pitches, also catering for variety such as grassy, bouncy and spinner - friendly.
- QAT: There is a gap of 37 days between the last assignment and QAT tournament, because of Ramzan and Eid break. 1st class umpires would have taken a rest of 37 days before they embark on an umpiring assignment in QAT. So there is no question of umpires' fatigue.
- Popularization of Cricket: This season only 8 new Associations have been granted playing rights. That way PCB is going in a systematic and not haphazard manner.
- Budgeting of Domestic Cricket: Budgeting has been done, it was not deemed necessary to make all those details public.
- Participating Associations: These are 63 Associations who will participate in this season. It also includes 8 new districts who have been given playing rights this season. The figure of 138 Associations thus is incorrect.
- PCB Eleven: The PCB Eleven participated in 1999-2000 season as Pakistan Reserves and not in 2000-2001 as mentioned in the report.
- Super League: The PCB has approached many potential sponsors, and there is every likelihood that a deal for Super League would be signed soon.
July 10, 2002