LAHORE: In a major development here, the Pakistan Cricket Board’s veteran Chief Operating Officer (COO) Subhan Ahmed resigned from his post of Friday.
Subhan’s decision was conveyed to the members of the Board of Governors in its 56th meeting held at the National Cricket Academy (NCA) here on Friday.
Reports about the ongoing conflict between Subhan and the new management of the PCB — headed by Ehsan Mani — had been making rounds in the media for the last one week. Though Subhan is currently on leave till the end of November, he reportedly sent in his resignation which gave credence to the reports of brewing tension between him and the PCB high-ups.
Sources said Subhan had the feeling that the PCB bigwigs will not allow him to resume duty after his annual leave ends later this month, so he preferred to quit his post.
Sources further confirmed that gradually Subhan’s role in the PCB affairs had gradually been minimised which made him very insecure. Before Mani’s tenure, Subhan was in charge of administrative as well as cricketing affairs of the PCB. But after the induction of Wasim Khan as chief executive, the BoGs had reallocated the powers, giving the entire administrative authority to Subhan and putting all cricketing affairs under Wasim.
Recently, when the PCB chairman further reduced the COO’s powers by not giving any majore role to Subhan in the upcoming edition of the Pakistan Super League (PSL), the message became all too obvious to Subhan that he is no longer required in the PCB set-up.
Subhan, who started his career in the PCB around 25 years ago as a low-grade official, gradually rose to the major position of acting COO. Later, then PCB chairman Ijaz Butt appointed him as full fledged COO on Dec 10, 2010. Since then Subhan head held sway over the PCB’s affairs with his main focus on maintaining PCB’s good relations with the ICC.
After Ijaz left the PCB, Subhan continued to serve as COO and worked various board chairmen including Zaka Ashraf, Najam Sethi, Shaharyar M. Khan and Ehsan Mani.
Currently, Zakir Khan — director international cricket — is in full control as the PCB chairman has assigned him a major role in the upcoming fifth edition of the PSL by appointing him head of four sub-committees, while relieving Subhan from all posts.
Meanwhile, the PCB issued a press release stating: “Mr Subhan Ahmed has stepped down as the Pakistan Cricket Board’s Chief Operating Officer after nine years in the role, the Board of Governors were informed during their 56th meeting on Saturday.”
According to the release, Subhan said: “After more than twenty-five years with the PCB, it is an appropriate time for me to move on. It has been a wonderful journey and an honour to represent the PCB at international forums as well as to contribute in the PCB’s transformation from a semi-professional to a thoroughly professional and one of the best-performing organisations of the country.
“I am grateful to all my colleagues and peers for their support and guidance, and the role they played in my development as a professional and progression from a junior officer to the Chief Operating Officer. Without their backing and patronage, I would not have achieved my career targets and objectives.
“I will remain a well-wisher of the PCB.”
PCB chairman Ehsan Mani said: “Subhan has made outstanding contributions to the PCB with respect, humility and integrity. Over the past so many years, he was at the forefront when the PCB made changes to how it operated and negotiated lucrative commercial deals to ensure the sport continues to remain healthy and thrive in Pakistan. In this background, it is sad to see him depart.
“On behalf of the PCB, I thank Subhan for his untiring services and wish him well for the future. The PCB would like to continue to benefit from his experience and we will be discussing a role based on specific projects,” the press release concluded.
Published in Dawn, November 23rd, 2019