PCB chairman warns of financial fallout if coronavirus disrupts ICC T20 WC

In other development, PCB has asked the government to legislate a law that would criminalise match-fixing and spot-fixing in cricket.
Ehsan Mani, the chairman of the Pakistan Cricket Board (PCB) has sent a warning of a possible financial fallout if the upcoming ICC T20 World Cup does not go ahead as planned due to the coronavirus pandemic.


The tournament is scheduled to be played in October-November this year in Australia but with much of the world in lockdown currently, the fate of the tournament hangs in the balance.


"If the World T20 in Australia, if that gets disrupted then the financial fallout from that will be very big. The distributions they the ICC give to members, many boards, including us will feel the pinch of it," ESPNCricinfo quoted Mani as saying on the PCB podcast.


Mani, who is also chairman of the ICC's Finance and Commercial Affairs committee was referring to the revenue that the ICC distributes to its members.


These payments are made by the ICC regardless of whether there is an ICC tournament in the calendar year and are calculated on the financial model that was agreed upon in June 2017.

ALSO READ: Won't agree to Asia Cup cancellation to accommodate IPL: PCB Chairman Mani


No pay cuts for Pakistan cricketers


However, Mani also clarified that the Pakistan players would not be given any unusual cuts amid the coronavirus.


"Cricketers are the biggest stakeholders in Pakistan cricket, both domestic and international. I want to assure everyone, that their interests will be safeguarded in the best possible way. There would not be any unusual cuts," Mani said in a video posted by the Pakistan Cricket Board's (PCB) official Twitter handle.


"As far as performance-based contracts are concerned, they are not in our domain, they are recommended by our selectors. Staff won't be redundant, but normal changes would take place as we are restructuring PCB," he added.

Chairman Ehsan Mani assures professional cricketers and PCB staff that the organisation will look after them in these testing times.

Stay tuned for full interview. pic.twitter.com/LS2LcDcBHU

— Pakistan Cricket (@TheRealPCB) April 14, 2020

Mani also stated that all retired cricketers will continue to get their pensions and PCB's main priority is safeguarding players and staff.


In other development, PCB has asked the government to legislate a law that would criminalise match-fixing and spot-fixing in cricket.


PCB chairman said at present they don't have the legal authority to call witnesses or check bank accounts and other details to deeply probe corruption cases.


"I have already spoken to the government about this because other cricket playing nations like Australia, New Zealand, Sri Lanka have enacted laws that make match-fixing a criminal offence," he said on Tuesday.

I am in talks with the government to make match-fixing a criminal offence: PCB Chairman Ehsan Mani

Full Video: https://t.co/Y6k6ARXVNf pic.twitter.com/cYpdvgDWX0

— Pakistan Cricket (@TheRealPCB) April 14, 2020

He said the PCB had closely followed the procedure adopted by the Sri Lankan board while legislating against match fixers.


"We are studying their procedure closely and we also want corruption acts in cricket to be considered a criminal act," he said.


What ICC anti-corruption Code say?


Mani, however, made it clear that until that is done the PCB would continue to follow the existing ICC Anti-Corruption Code which allows players to return to cricket again after completing a period of ban and rehabilitation process.


"I will not talk about individuals but right now players who have completed bans and undergone rehab have the right to play again and it applies to everyone," he said.


Pakistan cricket rattled by match-fixing


Pakistan has witnessed a number of corruption cases over the years with players such as Test captain Salim Malik, Danish Kaneria, Salman Butt, Muhammad Asif, Muhammad Aamir, Sharjeel Khan and Khalid Latif -- all caught in either match-fixing or spot-fixing.


Recently, left-handed opener Sharjeel was offered another chance to play for the national team after completing a two and a half year ban for spot-fixing in the Pakistan Super League.


Former captains not in favour of giving tainted players a second chance


It led to a huge debate on PCB's policy on allowing tainted players back in the national team.


Former captains, Ramiz Raja, Muhammad Hafeez and Shahid Afridi have all strongly spoken out against giving a second chance to guilty players.


Ramiz said in a recent interview that his blood boiled when left-arm pacer, Aamir was allowed back into the Pakistan team.


Pakistan batting great Javed Miandad had also said that cricketers involved in match fixing should be hanged.

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