Centrally-contracted players allowed to seek NOC from PCB for four Twenty20 leagues

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PCB chief executive Wasim Khan has said the new NOC policy is "flexible, balanced and comprehensive". —Dawn/File
PCB chief executive Wasim Khan has said the new NOC policy is "flexible, balanced and comprehensive". —Dawn/File

LAHORE: While all centrally-contracted players will seek NOC for participating in a maximum of four Twenty20 leagues directly from the Pakistan Cricket Board, contracted players on the domestic circuit will have to come through their respective associations for getting the same, it was announced here on Friday.

According to the new policy announced by the PCB about the issuance of NOCs on Friday, the players would get permission in this regard for a maximum of four leagues including the Pakistan Super League.

The policy was reviewed and approved by the PCB Board of Governors during their 57th meeting, subject to minor changes.

“According to the policy, all centrally-contracted players may seek clearance for up to a maximum of four leagues, including the HBL Pakistan Super League,” a PCB press release stated here on Friday.

“Initial feedback and assessment of [the] NOC requests will come through the International Cricket Operations department and national head coach/team management, who will carry out due diligence with respect to player workload and international commitments.”

As per NOC policies around the world, the chief executive of the Board will then be the final approving authority at the final stage of the process.

“The domestic players contracted by the Cricket Associations will be required to directly approach their respective associations for any NOC approvals in the first instance. Input and feedback will then be sought from the cricket operations department, before moving to the last stage of the approval process,” the press release added.

“For domestic players, who don’t feature in red-ball cricket but are white-ball regulars, it has been made mandatory for them to commit to (national) domestic 50-over and 20-over competitions in order to be eligible for NOCs.

“As per the ICC regulations, both inactive and retired cricketers will require NOCs from the PCB for ICC-approved events. However, the PCB will issue NOCs to players who have been retired for 24 months or more, unless there are compelling reasons which the PCB will have to provide in writing,” says the policy according to the press release.

Meanwhile commenting on the NOC policy, PCB chief executive Wasim Khan said: “I think this is a flexible, balanced and comprehensive NOC policy which addresses as many of the likely scenarios that we will face.

“We have given primacy and importance to player workload, international and domestic commitments, but at the same time it was important that players are given the opportunities to make additional earnings and develop their skills around the world.

“I am optimistic that moving forward, all the relevant stakeholders will have clarity and a better understanding of the process. To ensure that we maintain our relationships with cricket boards around the world, once granted, NOCs will only be revoked if there are any injury concerns, or there are international or domestic playing obligations that need to be fulfilled.”

Published in Dawn, March 28th, 2020