Pakistan will push for rollback of ‘Big Three’: Shaharyar

PCB Chairman believes a fair solution must be reached where all members are protected

Saleem Khaliq February 03, 2017
PHOTO: Malik Shafiq/ Express

KARACHI: Pakistan Cricket Board (PCB) Chairman Shaharyar Khan on Monday revealed that Pakistan will be among the countries to push for a rollback of the ‘Big Three’ in the ongoing International Cricket Council (ICC) meeting in Dubai after it was confirmed that there are no constitutional barriers in changing how the profits are divided among Test-playing nations.

In 2014, England, Australia and India collaborated to form the ‘Big Three’ to take control over the majority share of the profits of the ICC. However, Shashank Manohar, who replaced N Srinivasan as ICC President, termed the move wrong and formed a committee to review the changes wrought by the ‘Big Three’.

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According to the ‘Big Three’ agreement, the Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI), recipients of the highest share, was expected to receive $571.5 million between 2015 and 2013 in comparison to Pakistan’s $93.75 million.

Shaharyar said that Pakistan will push for an equal-for-all resolution at the ICC meeting where every nation’s rights are protected. “There are no legal barriers standing in the way to roll back the ‘Big Three’ but because India were the biggest beneficiaries of the move, they are expected to heavily oppose it,” he said. “We believe that everyone’s rights should be safeguarded and that the revenue needs to be distributed in a just manner.”

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He further revealed that the ICC has agreed on the formula to change the current system of the ‘Big Three’ and a final verdict would be given once the members come to a conclusion.

Shaharyar further added that Pakistan Task Force Chairman Giles Clarke, who recently visited Pakistan to gauge the security situation, would also submit his report to the ICC and a positive response is expected.

“Clarke’s report will be submitted to the ICC and we will use it to build our case to bring international cricket back to Pakistan. Holding our home ties in one of the most expensive cities in the world, Dubai, has taken a financial toll on the PCB and we will let the ICC know of the problems that has caused,” said Shaharyar, before adding that holding the PSL final in Lahore is of extreme importance for the return of international cricket to Pakistan.

“Holding the PSL final in Lahore is crucial. We will invite all ICC directors and senior officials to watch the final in Lahore so they can also bear witness to the security arrangements we have made. I hope they will be convinced by what we have done and help us in bringing international cricket back to the country,” he said.

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Speaking on the topic of the bi-lateral series between India and Pakistan, Shaharyar said that the board will first try to talk to the new BCCI president, once he has been confirmed, and based on the discussions will decide whether a settlement in court is required. However, he did admit that a bi-lateral series between the two nations in the short term seems a distant dream.

‘People must remember Misbah for the good’

Defending the under-fire Misbahul Haq, Shaharyar said that critics have been too harsh on the 42-year-old. “After poor results in just two series, the critics have forgotten the six years of good that have come under Misbah. People should remember him for the services given to Pakistan cricket rather than make judgements on a few series results. I haven’t had the chance to meet Misbah since the tour but when I meet him we will discuss about his future.”

'Four-day Tests unacceptable’

Shaharyar also said that the PCB will oppose the notion of shortening Tests from five to four days at the ICC meeting. “The beauty of Test cricket is in five-day match. Shortening it to four days doesn’t serve any purpose. We are against this and will voice our concerns at the ICC meeting.”

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