CRICKET
PTT'S RECOMMENDATIONS REMIND ONE OF ARAB'S CAMEL ANECDOTE

ANISUDDIN KHAN
(feedback@pgeconomist.com)

July 18 - 24, 2011

The ICC had raised Pakistan Task Team two years ago with one point agenda of helping Pakistan cricket which had suffered due to attack on Sri Lankan team in Lahore to find ways to help that country resume international cricket.

However, the PTT not only overstepped its mandate but while making a long list of recommendations gave suggestion in areas which was not needed. The recommendations made reminds one of the interesting story of an Arab Bedouin who allows his camel to put his head in his tent to escape sand storm, the camel slowly occupies the entire tent pushing his owner out of it.

The PTT acting as an Arab's camel has repeated the act and pushed the PCB out and its recommendations are blatant interference in domestic structure of Pakistan cricket which is one of the top teams in the world.

A close study of the 65 recommendation reveals that the PTT has interfered and overstepped its mandate in areas where it was not asked to make any suggestion. The PTT in one stroke of pen has totally rejected every thing good that was done in the past sixty years.

Full list of recommendations by ICC-Pakistan Task Team

1) ICC Members should continue to support PCB through fulfillment of FTP commitments at neutral venues in circumstances where safety and security remains a concern.

2) Where ICC Members are confident following their own risk assessments, they should consider touring Pakistan to honor their FTP commitments

3) ICC President and Chief Executive should continue to facilitate ongoing discussions on the resumption of bilateral series with India

4) ICC should support ongoing activity involving the Pakistan ambassadors (Brearley and Chappell) to keep issues relating to tours involving Pakistan in the public eye.

5) ICC management should continue with ongoing monitoring of PCB's implementation of these important integrity-related actions and provide six-monthly integrity updates to the ICC Board through to the end of 2012

6) There must be stability in the composition of the Selection Committee

7) The Selection Committee should be granted sole responsibility and be held accountable for all selection issues. No outside interference should be allowed.

8) There should be a clear process for the nomination and the appointment of candidates to the Selection Committee including the Chairman of Selectors.

9) Appointments of Selectors should be approved by the Governing Board which should also retain the right to remove selectors for valid reason.

10) Clear criteria should be determined for appointees to the Selection Committee including a requirement of previous first class, and preferably, international playing experience.

11) The Chairman's right of veto on the selection of players should be removed.

12) The Selection Committee should make recommendations on captaincy with their recommendation then being considered and ratified by the Governing Board.

13) The Captain and Coach of the team should be formally consulted by the Selection Committee prior to the selection of any team or squad.

14) Clear terms of Reference for the Selection Committee should be drawn up that, inter-alia, emphasize the independence of the Committee and include provisions detailing:

* The composition of the Committee;
* The required criteria for appointees; the appointment
* process; 16
* The term of appointment to the Committee;
* The responsibilities of the Committee; and
* The need for selection meeting procedures.

15) Ongoing liaison with the Integrity Committee by the Chairman of Selectors to ensure integrity issues are consistently and effectively addressed prior to selection of all teams.

16) The Team Manager and Team Coach positions should be appointed by the Governing Board.

The Governing Board may wish to appoint a sub-committee comprising the COO, the chairman of the PCB Cricket Committee and the Director of International Cricket to be responsible for the interviewing of suitable candidates, preparing a shortlist and the making of a final recommendations to the Governing Board.

17) The Team Manager should be appointed on a full time basis and the term of his appointment, subject to the satisfactory fulfillment of reasonable performance criteria, should be a minimum period of two years.

18) The Team Manager should play a lead role in maintaining squad discipline.

19) Ideally, the Team Manager should be a person capable of building relationships of trust with the players. An environment of openness should be fostered where issues like corruption can be openly discussed and any approaches reported to management.

20) Other support staff should be appointed by the COO (or CEO when introduced) in consultation with the Team Manager and Team Coach.

21) There should be a clear allocation of responsibilities amongst each of the team management personnel and these responsibilities should be properly documented and understood.

22) The number of centrally contracted players should be reduced (say to 25 plus 10 stipends).

23) Players need to be made aware of the financial constraints facing PCB and it is PCB's responsibility to communicate this to the players on an ongoing basis.

24) Players should be given the opportunity to have assistance/representation in contract negotiations.

25) PCB should review its 'on tour' disciplinary code in conjunction with the players to ensure it is relevant to the risks related to touring and has full player support and understanding.

26) Proposed changes to the PCB's disciplinary processes should be implemented and PCB should ensure that these new processes conform to the principles of natural justice.

27) The Cricket Committee should be given more prominence in PCB's governance structures in order to provide direction on all cricket issues. In particular, it should be made responsible and accountable for considering and making recommendations to the GoverningBoard relating to the domestic cricket structures.

28) Led by the Cricket Committee (and with input from the cricket experts including Brearley, Chappell and Raja), PCB should conduct a review of its domestic structures at the first class level. The number of first class teams, the value of continuing with the combined regional/corporate structure and the need for the Pentangular Cup should be the focus of the review.

29) Even in the face of a difficult financial situation, PCB should seek to maintain and develop the strong structures of youth cricket that it already has in place.

30) The current level of resources allocated to game development should be retained as far as possible.

31) The roles and responsibilities of Team Manager and Head of Game Development should be separated.

32) PCB should prioritize the use of international-standard balls in the top division of its multi-day and one-day men's competitions.

33) The convention of Pakistan match officials taking the roles designated for local officials in international matches should continue even where such matches are hosted overseas.

34) PCB needs to develop a comprehensive strategy that seeks to extract value from staging its home matches in the UAE while it is not possible to play international cricket in Pakistan.

35) The PCB and ICC are currently engaged in a consultative process of constitutional review. It is proposed that this process continues over the next few months, with a view to amending the PCB constitution so as to:

* Provide for free elections and/or appointments from
* amongst PCB's
* members for their
Governing Board, or nominees from outside of their
* members appointed by the Governing Board;
* Ensure that the government does not have powers to

* unduly interfere in the administration of cricket by the PCB, including operational matters, the selection and management of teams, and the appointment of coaches and

* support
* personnel;
* Reduce the absolute executive powers of the Chairman by
* creating the
* post of Chief

Executive, who is appointed by the Governing Board.

36) PCB should develop a longer-term strategic plan.

37) Regional bodies should be empowered to manage their affairs and given more say in the decision-making of the PCB itself.

38) The Chairman of the Board should play a non-executive leadership role.

39) The post of CEO (which should replace the current COO post) should be created with appropriate authority and an appropriate person (which does not preclude the incumbent COO being considered) should be appointed on a fixed contract (renewable) basis.

40) The CEO should undertake a comprehensive review of the entire management, operational and administrative activities and structures to ensure the PCB is properly set up for the long term in line with a strategic plan.

41) There should be greater empowerment of management who should be held responsible for the management and administration of the PCB.

42) PCB should partner with another Full Member country to afford placement opportunities for key staff to learn best practice in specialist areas such as finance and administration, IT, commercial, event management etc.

43) The roles of Internal Auditor and CFO, which in the interim have been combined, should be separated.

44) The Internal Auditor should report to the Chairman of the Audit Committee who, preferably, should be independent of the PCB.

45) PCB should review its Code of Ethics to ensure it is fit for purpose and applicable to all Committee members (including Governing Board members) and staff.

46) PCB should conduct induction training for Governing Board, Committee members and staff to ensure general orientation as well as specific awareness on issues relating to ethics and media leaks and also introduce a disciplinary process with clear sanctions to deal with breaches.

47) The newly appointed CEO and CFO should undertake a comprehensive review of PCB cost structures to ensure its cost base is sustainable.

48) PCB should commence a zero-based review of its cost base with a view to remove all nonessential costs as soon as possible.

49) Budgets should be developed bottom up on a zero-based activity cost basis and submitted to a skilled finance committee for review before being recommended for approval by the Governing Board.

50) PCB should defer any capital expenditure and infrastructure development programs until its finances have been reviewed and long term strategy and plans agreed.

51) PCB should appoint and empower an experienced and effective Head of its Media and Communications (MAC) department who should be a key member of the PCB's senior Management team.

52) In turn, the Head of MAC should develop a strategy aimed at improving the image and reputation of the PCB and to promote the game of cricket in Pakistan.

53) The general role of the MAC team should be reviewed to ensure it is set up to deliver the PCB's media strategy.

54) There should be a determined effort to prevent information leaks by restricting sensitive information to a small trusted group and dealing with any breach.

55) PCB should introduce a comprehensive media/public comment policy applicable to all internal stakeholders (Governing Board and committee members, all contracted players, umpires and staff) that includes a disciplinary process and penalties for non-compliance. The policy should be incorporated as part of all relevant Codes and contracts and communicated to the media.

56) PCB should provide media training to all relevant MAC staff and key officials, covering essential communications areas including media management, crisis management and media release production.

57) PCB's transparency would be enhanced through a more comprehensive, consistent and corporate website that is maintained by a dedicated in-house resource and includes information about Codes, disciplinary processes and the proactive work being done by PCB and its stakeholders.

58) PCB MAC team should make regular presentations to the major stakeholders (politicians, news organizations, sponsors etc) to educate them on the positive projects being undertaken by the PCB and advise them of progress being made.

59) An effective CSR programme should be developed to help improve the standing of the PCB in the eyes of the community. The country desperately needs its corporate citizens and cricket role models to play a lead in this regard.

60) Pakistan's senior men's team should travel with a dedicated team media manager for all bilateral series and ICC Events. This could be funded from the savings made by ending the practice of PCB subsidizing (in full or part) the expenses of selected journalists taken on overseas tours.

61) Media manager on tour must be a trusted part of the team management group who is able to advise on and influence decisions so that he/she can effectively interact with media and broadcasters.

62) All meetings and selection panel decisions should be announced via media conferences so that media get answers to their questions. A media release, including extensive quotes of the person holding the media conference, should also be distributed while audio and visual clips of the media conference should be uploaded on the website so there is no misreporting/misquoting.

63) All media releases should be in Urdu and English.