Pak PM Imran Khan rejects plea to reinstate department cricket; defends changes in domestic structure

Imran Khan, Pakistan Prime Minister, has on Wednesday (September 16) defended his decision to change the domestic cricket structure in the country in order to allow the Pakistan cricket to “grow and become strong” in the future.

Recently, after the Australia tour, Pakistan head coach and chief selector Misbah-ul-Haq, Mohammad Hafeez, and Azhar Ali met with the Prime Minister in Islamabad along with Pakistan Cricket Board chairman Ehsan Mani and PCB CEO Wasim Khan to discuss the domestic cricket system and carried a plea from players to reinstate departmental cricket.

They had earlier said that the new domestic cricket system, void of departmental cricket, had left many cricketers jobless and was not cut out for the Pakistan cricket culture, but the legendary all-rounder insisted that the new system will produce world-class talent after initial teething problems.

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Addressing the PCB officials, the Pakistan Television Corporation, and information ministry officials, Imran has pointed out that Pakistan cricket had only done well because of its immense raw talent despite a poor domestic cricket system while mentioning the issue.

As per Press Trust of India reports, Imran said: “I have convinced, with great difficulty, Misbah-ul-Haq, Mohammad Hafeez and Azhar Ali (who were among the attendees) that the new cricket structure must be allowed to grow and become strong.”

He further added, “I told them that every new system had its teething problems and it takes some time but I can assure you once it is established it will ensure the raw talent we have in cricket will come through polished and groomed for international cricket.”

The former captain was also hopeful that Pakistan cricket would have a strong squad before the next World Cup in 2023 and for which, the new system is to ensure only quality players come forward. He signed off by saying, “I am hopeful that we will be able in a position to field a very strong team for the next World Cup and do well in it thanks to this new system.”

(PTI inputs)

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