ISLAMABAD, Oct 7: President Asif Ali Zardari, Patron of the Pakistan Cricket Board (PCB), on Monday appointed former Test cricketer Ijaz Butt as new chairman of the cricket board.

Federal Secretary Sports Ashraf Khan told Dawn on Tuesday that a formal notification to this effect is most likely to be issued on Wednesday.

The post of the chairman PCB had been lying vacant after the resignation of last board chief Dr Nasim Ashraf on Aug 18 when Pervez Musharraf resigned from the presidency.

According to Mansoor Suhail, PCB Director Media, Ijaz is the 26th chairman of the PCB.

A former Test wicket-keeper/batsman, Ijaz has played eight Test matches for Pakistan and is also one of the Governing Board members of the PCB.

Former Test fast bowler Aaqib Javed, when contacted to comment on the appointment of Ijaz as the chairman PCB, said: “It was a long demand of former Test players that a Test cricketer should be appointed the head of the board and so it is a right step.

“Ijaz has the experience of management as well as knowledge of the game,” Aaqib stated, adding that Ijaz is well aware of the PCB affairs.

Aaqib further stressed that there must be a balance in the powers of the chairman PCB and the Governing Board members for the better management of cricket.

He also highlighted that the biggest challenge for the new chairman will be to revive international cricket in Pakistan.

“The biggest front for the new chairman is to convince foreign teams to come to Pakistan to play cricket because due to the security concerns some cricket playing nations are not willing to play in our country,” he said.

He also mentioned the competition that the PCB faces on the global level particularly after the recent steps taken by the Indian board.

“The Indian cricket board has set new standards for the developing countries’ cricket boards as they have increased the financial packages for their domestic players besides introducing the Indian Premier League (IPL),” Aaqib stated.

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