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Don’t follow Amir, Wahab’s example: PCB set to offer improved central contracts

Duo stepped away from Test cricket last year

Don’t follow Amir, Wahab’s example: PCB set to offer improved central contracts PHOTO: AFP

The Pakistan Cricket Board (PCB) is keen on ensuring that its players don’t follow in the footsteps of fast-bowlers Mohammad Amir and Wahab Riaz, who stepped away from Test cricket last year. In order to pursue this objective, the board will urge them to play the longest format of the game more often by complementing it with increased income.

According to sources, the match fees for the red-ball format is set to be increased by 25 to 50 per cent.

Players, who are in category A, could receive up to Rs1 million for a single five-day encounter. The PCB is also trying to help players by providing them with their fees and bonuses during the Covid-19 outbreak.

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PCB’s Chief Executive (CE) Wasim Khan, Head Coach-cum-Chief Selector Misbahul Haq and Director International Cricket Zakir Khan will discuss the list for men and women who are likely to receive central contracts, in a meeting that will take place later this month. The decision on the players’ categories will also be made in this meeting.

It should be noted that the PCB granted 19 players with a central contract in August last year. The list of centrally contracted players in 2019 did not include veteran all-rounders Shoaib Malik and Mohammad Hafeez. The duo is unlikely to be added this time as well.

Amir and Wahab, who called time on their Test careers, could be demoted to the C category. A category players, who receive a monthly salary of Rs1.1 million include former captain Sarfaraz Ahmed, batsman Babar Azam and leg-spinner Yasir Shah.

The players in the B category, who receive a monthly salary of Rs0.75 million, include batsmen Azhar Ali, Asad Shafiq, Haris Sohail, Imamul  Haq, bowlers Mohammad Abbas, Shadab Khan, Shaheen Shah and Wahab Riaz.

The players in the C category, who receive a monthly salary of Rs0.5 million, include batsmen Abid Ali, Fakhar Zaman, Shan Masood, wicketkeeper Mohammad Rizwan, bowlers Hasan Ali, Imad Wasim, Mohammad Amir and Usman Shinwari.

The current contracts are set to expire in June. The final decisions are yet to be made, however, it looks certain that former captain Sarfaraz Ahmed will be replaced by batsman Azhar Ali in the A category.