SLC eager to sign more Pak players

SLC said SLPL will go ahead despite losses incurred due to withdrawal of Indian players AFP

Faisalabad: Jun 29, 2011

Sri Lankan Cricket (SLC) stung by the refusal of the Indian cricket authorities to release their players for next month’s Sri Lankan Premier League T20 tournament have started to rope in more Pakistani cricketers for the event.

According to details, SLC is regularly seeking clearance from the Pakistan Cricket Board (PCB) to sign on Pakistani players after the BCCI refused to give permission to 12 of its cricketers to play in the SLPL.

Sources said that the former captains — Mohammad Yousuf, Younus Khan, Shahid Afridi — are now among the Pakistani cricketers who have signed contracts with the SLC for the league that starts from July 19.

The other Pakistani players included are allrounder Abdul Razzaq, national team discards Fawad Alam and Shahzaib Hasan, upcoming batsman Asad Shafiq and opener Ahmed Shehzad.

Fast bowler Mohammad Irfan is also been roped in, while Umar Gul is said to have been given a contract as well.

A PCB official said it had no issues allowing its players to go and play in the league as it meant extra earnings for them.

“The system they are following is that the Sri Lankan board is directly signing our players on contracts and then the franchised teams bid and buy the players they want from the Sri Lankan board,” he explained.

The official also said that while the players were being paid a fixed amount by the Sri Lankan board they would earn more when franchises sign them up.

“Basically the SL board has signed up a pool of players the franchises can choose from. There is no guarantee that a player who is in the pool will play in the league but he gets paid his contractual amount.”

The Sri Lankan Cricket board, meanwhile, has said that the event will go ahead as planned despite the withdrawal of Indian players but admitted that the league will incur a financial loss.

Apart from the Indian players, other international cricketers from the top-cricketing nations including Daniel Vetorri (New Zealand), Herchelle Gibbs (South Africa), Chris Gayle and Kieron Pollard (West Indies) are certain to feature in the tournament.