Tuesday May 07, 2019
ISLAMABAD: Prime Minister Imran Khan on Monday during a session with senior journalists responded to former captain Javed Miandad’s criticism of abolishing departmental cricket.
“Javed has his opinion,” the prime minister said as he stressed that nowhere else in the world would sponsors field their teams in tournaments.
“Across the world, there are local matches. Pakistan is the only country where sponsors have teams. I have been asking for this structure to be fixed since my cricket playing days.”
The prime minister asked why Pakistan was the only country where departments were paying players. “I can guarantee that no one can beat Pakistan if this corrupt system is fixed.”
Prime Minister Khan told journalists that no other country in the world had the amount of talent Pakistan did. “The problem is that the system does not allow for the talent to come up.”
Prime Minister Imran Khan who is Patron in Chief of the Pakistan Cricket Board (PCB) has told the chairman Ehsan Mani to abolish departments’ role in cricket structure and restrict the domestic first-class tournaments to six provincial teams.
On April 27, in a news conference together with Jahangir Khan and Islahuddin Siddique, Miandad was critical of the prime minister’s decision, stating departmental cricket was a way for players to earn a living. The former Pakistan legend said that till there were departmental cricket and sports, the country was making great strides.
“I can say with surety that if it wasn’t for PIA, Jahangir Khan wouldn’t be Jahangir Khan.”
Miandad said the biggest problem facing Pakistan was the country’s economy. “People want jobs, no one wants to play cricket or hockey. Their helplessness is being taken advantage of.”
Javed Miandad further said Prime Minister Imran Khan had himself played country cricket in England. “Were we crazy to play there? We played because of the money.”