2011 World Cup August 29, 2009

Former Pakistan players happy with out-of court settlement

Cricinfo staff

Former Pakistan players have welcomed the Pakistan Cricket Board's decision not to take the legal route against the ICC after the country was stripped of its 2011 World Cup games over security issues.

At a meeting in Dubai between the PCB chairman Ijaz Butt and ICC president David Morgan, it was decided that Pakistan would retain its hosting fee of US$ 10.5 million and receive an additional payment as compensation for the loss of hosting rights, bringing the total returns, estimated by the PCB, to around US$18 million.

Former captain Moin Khan felt that legal action would have complicated things further for the PCB, which has been adversely affected by pull-outs by international teams in the last two years.

"I think it is always wise to resolve issues through negotiations," Moin told PTI. "I don't know who advised the PCB to file a legal challenge in the first place. But at least now Pakistan will get some good money from the World Cup."

Zaheer Abbas said the Lahore attack on the Sri Lankan cricketers had given the ICC enough reason to shift the matches out of Pakistan.

"No team is willing to play in Pakistan at the moment because of security issues," Zaheer said. "So it would have been futile to even go for a full legal challenge against the ICC who have adequate justification for moving the matches out of Pakistan. There is a general sympathy for us in international cricket and we should use that to our advantage."

Former wicketkeeper Rashid Latif expressed similar sentiments. "I always felt the ICC would give us plenty of concessions and compensation for shifting the World Cup matches," Latif said. "There is sympathy for Pakistan cricket everywhere."

But former opening batsmen Aamer Sohail wasn't pleased that the PCB had opted for an out-of-court settlement, saying that it would set a bad precedent.

"I think we have sent a wrong message to everyone," Sohail said. "The most important thing right now for us to get teams to resume touring Pakistan as soon as possible and by agreeing to surrender our World Cup matches we will give out the wrong message."