Pakistan’s recently appointed Director of Cricket, Mohammad Hafeez, has stated that the players have to put national duty above franchise-league commitments and that central contracts will depend on whether players are available for national duty and play domestic cricket.
Mohammad Hafeez’s comments came after the Pakistan speedster Haris Rauf, who was taken to the cleaners in the ODI World Cup 2023 declined to participate in the upcoming three-match Test series against Australia. Instead, he is awaiting a No Objection Certificate from the board to participate in the Big Bash League, commencing on December 7.
Here’s what Mohammad Hafeez said in a press-conference:
“All centrally contracted and domestic contracted players, for all of them, the priority is Pakistan. The point of offering it (contract) to the 20-25 players is to make sure they are available to play.”
“Now there is a parallel option in the form of leagues and we experienced this in the Asia Cup and World Cup. There was talk of fatigue, or players were getting injured because their workloads were too much, or not performing as they should.”
Tensions are brewing between Pakistan players and the cricket board as the board hesitates to grant no objection certificates for foreign league participation, causing delays. Allegedly, this situation played a role in the retirement announcement of Pakistan all-rounder Imad Wasim from all forms of international cricket.