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Pakistan cricketers upset with PCB

IANS - Tuesday 8th May, 2012

Senior Pakistani cricketers, including skipper Misbah-ul-Haq and Shahid Afridi, are upset after the Pakistan Cricket Board (PCB) refused to let them play in a Twenty20 match in Toronto slated for May 12.

Pakistan's Online news agency reported that the players were denied the opportunity at the last moment despite verbal assurance by PCB Director (International Cricket Operations) Intikhab Alam.

"Now it has transpired that since none of the players has applied for NOCs in writing from the Board and neither have they submitted details of the organisers and match the PCB says it cannot give permission," the agency quoted a source as saying.

While players blame Intikhab, but a senior PCB official said that the players were themselves to blame for the situation.

"Even if Intikhab gave them permission verbally the Board can`t act without having something in writing. None of the players have bothered to seek permission or NOC in writing from the relevant authorities in the board so how do they expect to get permission," the official said.

The official also said that according to rules no player can confirm his participation in a match or without the approval of the board.

The players' contention is that Misbah and Afridi were in Thailand for a commercial shoot and didn't have time to write to the board. Misbah and Afridi assured their participation only after a verbal assurance from Intikhab.

The organisers are also upset as they have sold out tickets for the match on the basis of the Pakistani players confirming their appearance in the match.

"The organizers point out that tickets were sold out because they advertised that Misbah, Afridi, Mohammad Hafeez, Saeed Ajmal, Umar Akmal, Hammad Azam were the players who would take part in the match. They even arranged electronic visas for the players for Canada after confirmation from the players and they fear if the players don`t show up for the match they could face heavy financial losses," a source was quoted as saying.

The players still have a chance and if they apply in writing the board could still give them a nod to appear in the match.

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