No cricket in Ramadan this year as PCB denies NOC to tournament organisers


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Amid the coronavirus pandemic, tournaments keep getting cancelled and this year during Ramazan, fans won’t get an opportunity to enjoy the action-packed Twenty20 competitions.

The T20 games that are spread across several tournaments in Karachi provides lots of entertainment to spectators as these events precede the festival of ‘Eid’ and so often capacity crowds are observed at various venues in the metropolis.

The matches start in the evening and would go on till late at night. They garner a lot of attention and players seem to relish it as well.

Not only popular names in Pakistan cricket partake in these tournaments but the celebrities chip in too that add glamour and more reasons to tune into these games.

Ramadan domestic tournaments provide a fantastic opportunity to the first-class cricketers as well as established players to stay in practice and grab the attention of the selectors.

Umar Akmal, Umar Amin, Sarfaraz Ahmed, Rohail Nazir and the current chief selector and head coach – Misbah-ul-Haq – featured in Ramzan tournaments last year which is a testament to the quality of cricket and how much value top-flight cricketers put in these events.

Corporate Cup at Moin Khan Academy, MA Shah tournament at the Asghar Ali Shah Stadium and the Naya-Nazimabad tournament – that was broadcasted live on Cricingif in 2019 – draws most of the cricketers to the city.

However, Pakistan Cricket Board (PCB) has already announced that it won’t issue NOCs for any cricket during the month of Ramadan.

The PCB in a statement said: “We have been approached by some organisers, seeking clarification on the PCB’s NOC policy for Ramadan cricket.

“At this time it is appropriate we follow our overarching policy which states that organised cricket in Pakistan will remain suspended until normalcy returns to society. In this background, the PCB will not issue any NOCs for Ramadan cricket.

“These are unprecedented, tough and challenging times for the world as all economic and sporting activities have come to a standstill with sole focus being on health and safety of the people.

“The PCB strongly urges organisers and cricketers to religiously follow all precautionary measures, including remaining indoors, maintaining social distancing and avoiding gatherings.

“The PCB takes the welfare and wellbeing of its staff and cricketers very seriously. It has around 220 professional cricketers on its payroll apart from its staffers.

“The PCB will ensure that full player salaries continue to be honoured until at least the end of the 2019-2020 financial year. Furthermore, we have put in place systems to ensure that monthly salaries are paid on time and without delay.

“The PCB is monitoring the situation in the country closely as it evolves and will amend its policy when appropriate.”

Quetta Gladiators owner Nadeem Omar has come forward in this unprecedented crisis and vowed to help the local cricketers who have been a part of Omar Associates to protect them financially from the cancellation fallout.

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