The Pakistan Cricket Board (PCB) has barred its employees from TV commentary. The decision to place the ban on its employees from TV commentary came after the board was severely criticized for allowing its high ranking officials to don the role of commentators in some matches.
According to an official within the PCB, Shahryar Khan, the chairman of the board feels that allowing the employees to appear on TV can lead to a serious issue of conflict of interest. As a consequence, it was Khan’s idea to place the ban.
Things went worse for PCB when chief selector Haroon Rasheed and selector Azhar Khan took to commentary in a domestic T20 game during the national Super Eight T20 tournament in Faisalabad. Things took an ugly turn when the bowling coach of the National Cricket Academy, Muhammad Akram was a part of the commentary team in the recently concluded Pakistan – Zimbabwe series.
An official within the board was quoted saying, “The Board has realised it was a mistake to allow Haroon or even Akram to sit as commentators and this will not happen again.” The official said in fact the Board was preparing a revised media policy also for its contracted players or members of the national team. “In recent times a number of these players have come and sought permission from the Board to work for television channels during a series after first committing to the assignment,” the official said.
The official also said that if the PCB employees wanted to commentate in the future, then they would have to give a prior notice to the board seeking permission. A source in the PCB said that one of the clauses in the central contract which caused differences between players and the Board pertained to media appearances by cricketers for different channels during major events and bilateral series.