Karachi: Members of the Pakistan team are yet to get their new central contracts and are also awaiting payments dating back to the last four months. According to the Jang newspaper, the members of the national team have not been paid their match fees, central-contract retainers and other dues for the series against Bangladesh, England and the Asia Cup.
The newspaper quoted sources close to the national team as saying that some of the players were getting concerned about the long delay in clearance of their payments by the Pakistan Cricket Board (PCB).
"The dues include the match fees and other payments for the series against Bangladesh, England and the Asia Cup, while the central contracts given to [the] players last year also expired on December 31, and for the last four months, the players have also not got their central-contract monthly retainers," one source said.
PCB spokesman Nadeem Sarwar said while it was correct that players had not been paid some dues for the last few months, it was not an unusual situation. "Payments for different series usually take two to three months for clearance. And the players will get their central contract retainer payments from January 1, 2012, whenever the board announces the new list of centrally contracted players," Sarwar said.
Interestingly, the Pakistani players have been subjected to long delays in clearance of their dues since the tenure of former Chairman Ijaz Butt, who made it clear that due to the refusal of international teams to tour Pakistan because of security concerns, the PCB's financial position was a difficult one.
A board official admitted that during Butt's tenure, the earnings of the PCB were hit badly since the board could not earn much from 'home' series that had to be played at neutral venues. "Yes, it is true that when Butt was in power, the financial health of the board was not very good, but in the last one and half years, a lot of money has come to the PCB as part of our share of the different ICC tournaments," he said.
The official said the PCB had also got compensation from the ICC after losing the right to host the matches in Pakistan due to security concerns. The PCB has said it intends to give a pay-raise to the players in the new central contracts and for this purpose had constituted a committee headed by Intikhab Alam to make recommendations.
"The committee has given its recommendations for pay-raises but the matter will be finalised and the new list of contracted players will be announced soon after the chairman of the board returns home after attending the ICC meeting," a source said.
Players are expecting a pay-raise of 20 to 25 per cent in their central-contract retainers and also in their match fees in all three formats of the game.