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News

PCB grants NOCs to 43 players for BBL draft

Most of the players who have nominated for the draft are unlikely to be involved in Pakistan's international commitments

Umar Farooq
Umar Farooq
22-Aug-2022
Shadab Khan and Asif Ali, as well as Shahnawaz Dahani, might be available for only a part of the BBL  •  Getty Images

Shadab Khan and Asif Ali, as well as Shahnawaz Dahani, might be available for only a part of the BBL  •  Getty Images

The PCB has given no-objection certificates (NOCs) to 43 of its players, to be listed in the BBL's overseas draft, just a few weeks after rejecting an initial list of players.
When the first list of 98 overseas players, who had nominated themselves for the BBL draft, came out last month, no Pakistani players were in it. In the new batch of nominations, Trent Boult, Shadab Khan, Andre Russell and Jason Roy were among the big names confirmed as platinum players. Shadab, in fact, headed a sizeable contingent of Pakistan names, including the likes of Mohammad Amir, Sarfaraz Ahmed, Mohammad Hafeez, Umar Akmal, Kamran Akmal and Wahab Riaz.
None of the multi-format stalwarts - such as Babar Azam, Mohammad Rizwan and Shaheen Shah Afridi - are in; they will be a central part of Pakistan's home season with Tests against England and white-ball series against New Zealand and West Indies, all between December and February, before the PSL starts in mid-February.
Most of the players who have nominated for the draft are unlikely to be involved in Pakistan's international commitments, or even in domestic first-class tournaments - the Quaid-e-Azam Trophy clashes with the start of the BBL.
Asif Ali, a certain pick in Pakistan's T20I squad, was part of the earlier list, which was denied NOCs, but is in this batch. Asif, Shadab and Shahnawaz Dahani are most likely to be available - if picked at all - only partially in the BBL because of their involvement in Pakistan's short-format sides. Azam Khan is also in the nominated list, having signed on as the first Pakistani player in the UAE-based ILT20 recently. He is, however, awaiting an NOC to play in that league.
NOC-related issues led to a near-strike in November 2019, which eventually helped put in place a policy [available on the board website] that the PCB formalised in issuing NOCs: that allows players to seek NOCs for three overseas leagues excluding the PSL.
The process of issuing NOCs for participation in overseas T20 leagues was one of the issues raised by a group of players before signing their central contracts with the PCB recently; in particular, the timeframe between a request and a response from the board.
NOC-related issues led to a near-strike in November 2019, which eventually helped put in place a policy [available on the board website] that the PCB formalised in issuing NOCs: that allows players to seek NOCs for three overseas leagues excluding the PSL.
There has been some frustration among players who feel they will miss out on the big-money leagues in the UAE, and CSA's upcoming league, to add to their absence from the IPL.
There was a suggestion at one stage that the PCB might compensate players for not playing in other leagues, but the contract offered made no mention of it. Players eventually signed the contract on the basis that discussions, including around NOCs, will resume after the Asia Cup.

Umar Farooq is ESPNcricinfo's Pakistan correspondent