PCB announces bonus for ground staff for efficiency in PSL V

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Ground staff have a thankless job, says PCB COO. — AFP/File
Ground staff have a thankless job, says PCB COO. — AFP/File

LAHORE: The Pakistan Cricket Board (PCB) has announced a bonus for its ground staff who worked tirelessly during the fifth edition of Pakistan Super League which was held entirely in the country for the first-ever time this year.

The PSL-V, which was organised from Feb 20 to March 17 had to be halted due to Covid-19 at the semi-final stage scheduled for March 17 at the Gaddafi Stadium.

Earlier, during the event many matches were disturbed due to rain which required a lot of efforts of the ground staff to make the ground playable, especially the matches in Rawalpindi and Lahore.

In many of those matches, the extra efforts launched by the ground staff made the play possible.

“As many as 63 ground staff across Karachi, Lahore, Multan and Rawalpindi will receive a 50 per cent bonus on their salaries for the month of August. In addition, the board will also provide a reward of Rs 10,000 to five non-PCB employed daily wagers,” a PCB press release said on Friday.

“That the fans were treated with high-quality cricketing action and made their way to stadia all over the country was in part due to the effortless work of these 68 ground staff who produced high-quality cricket pitches besides preparing immaculate outfields that resulted in riveting cricketing action.

The crowd attendance at all four venues was a staggering 87 per cent,” the press release added.

PCB Chief Operating Officer Salman Naseer said: “The ground staff have a thankless job. Their work is of the utmost importance in smooth execution of cricket matches so it is extremely important that their work is acknowledged and they are rewarded for their efforts.

“Our ground staff were outstanding during the HBL PSL earlier this year especially when they were confronted with adverse weather conditions. They worked with great dedication round the clock to deliver top-quality pitches and outfields, which produced some of the most exciting T20 matches.

“After a very long time, we are now looking to have all of our cricket back in the country and with the excellent work of these ground staff, I am sure our fans will be treated with top-quality cricketing action when top-flight cricket resumes in the country.”

Awarding the bonus to ground staff is a good step and hopefully the PCB will also reconsider its decision of stopping the monthly contribution of 240 ground staff and curators to bring them in its fold as they all are cricketing assets.

The PCB, it may be mentioned that, acting on its new constitution introduced on Aug 19, 2019, had abolished the 16 regional cricket associations, with whom these curators and ground staff were working. While some portion of their monthly salaries were being offered by their respective regional bodies, another portion was being paid by the PCB. But after the PCB stopped its contribution, they were not ready to do the job just on the portion being offered by their regional bodies as many of them left the working. It resulted in making many of them jobless.

The PCB, though abolished the regional cricket associations with one stroke, they could not bring an alternative domestic system despite the passage of one year.

Moreover, the PCB has not yet formed the new Board of Governors or the General Body according to the new constitution.

Published in Dawn, August 8th, 2020