Lahore: Former Test captain Aamir Sohail has called on the PCB and the Pakistan government to ensure the participation of Pakistani players in the Indian Premier League (IPL). Sohail, a former chief selector and now a well-known cricket analyst and commentator, said that even though the IPL was a domestic tournament of the Indian board, it was still sad that only Pakistani players were missing from the ongoing competition.
"Players from all over the world are invited to take part in the competition. Why should only Pakistani players continue to be kept out of the IPL?" he questioned. "The PCB and even the government should find out the cause for this issue. The PCB must ask the BCCI why only Pakistani players are not allowed to take part in the IPL. When our players can go and play in the World Series Hockey (WSH), I don't understand why not in the IPL. No one appears to have a logical explanation for this."
BCCI vice-president Rajeev Shukla had last week said that Pakistani players could only be invited to take part in the IPL once bilateral cricket ties resume between the two countries. He made it clear that the IPL was a sub-committee of the BCCI and was governed by it. "We have nothing against Pakistan. If that was so, we wouldn't have allowed Pakistani umpires, commentators or coaches in the IPL," Shukla said.
Meanwhile, Sohail welcomed the PCB's move to invite Bangladesh to play two matches in Lahore. "I think the PCB has done the right thing by inviting a foreign team to Pakistan because we need to get the ball rolling. It is a series where we should also try out our new players, particularly fast bowlers," he said.