PCB to demand compensation if Trophy is relocated

Thursday, July 10, 2008

Pakistan will demand for a substantial compensation from the International Cricket Council (ICC) in case this September’s Champions Trophy is relocated from here because of security fears.

Well-placed sources in the Pakistan Cricket Board (PCB) told ‘The News’ on Wednesday that
“Pakistan will not take any negative ICC decision on the Champions Trophy just lying down and will seek compensation in case the tournament is taken out of the country”.

Sources said that the PCB’s primary demand in case Pakistan are deprived of the Champions Trophy will be to get a US$3 million hosting fee from the ICC. As the host country of the Champions Trophy, Pakistan are to receive that amount from ICC - the game’s governing body.

But they could be deprived of the fee if the tournament which is scheduled to be held from September 11-28 in Karachi, Lahore and Rawalpindi is relocated from Pakistan.

The Board is also considering demanding the hosting rights of the next edition of the ICC Champions Trophy. The 2010 tournament has been awarded to the West Indies but the PCB will ask the ICC to reconsider that decision in case this year’s Champions Trophy is taken away from Pakistan.

However, a PCB source conceded that such a demand might not be acceptable to the ICC as it would be punishing for the West Indies.

The ICC is under considerable pressure from a few competing nations to take away the Champions Trophy from Pakistan because of security concerns. Several players from Australia — the Champions Trophy title-holders —, England and New Zealand have openly raised doubts about their participation in the tournament.

A series of bombings in Islamabad and Karachi has not helped Pakistan’s cause in spite of repeated assurances from the PCB and the government that all possible steps will be taken to ensure the safety of players and officials during the Champions Trophy.

The ICC has kept Sri Lanka as an alternate venue for the Champions Trophy but questions have also been raised about the strife-torn island nation’s choice as Champions Trophy hosts. Fresh reports have suggested that the Champions Trophy is more likely to be played in South Africa than Sri Lanka in case it is relocated from Pakistan.

Both Sri Lanka and South Africa have shown their keenness to host the Champions Trophy. Gerald Majola, the chief of Cricket South Africa (CSA), was quoted as saying on Wednesday that his country can host the tournament successfully in case it is approached by the ICC even at such short notice.

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