Change Of Guard At PCB

Change Of Guard At PCB
With the change of guard at the highest level it was ominously clear, in fact as clear as the light of day, that the power corridors of PCB will be jolted as well.

Traditionally, this has been the case in the flawed system which continues to this day that when the government is ousted the rest - no matter at what level, be it politics or sports - has to bear the blow.

Much as I dislike to be critical of this sad saga of hire and fire on the whims of those who dictate such situations, I feel that I need to make my own view point on the recent events in which the ousted PCB Chairman Ramiz Raja has been unnecessarily vocal about the way he was removed.

His expected axing was imminent as far back as April 2022, when the previous government lost the vote of no confidence.

Ramiz, however, survived through the crisis for two reasons despite the sword hanging over him. Firstly, because he was very much instrumental in convincing the cricketing world to lure their teams in Pakistan with security well in place.

Secondly, I suppose, was the sensible delay to replace him by by the present government and their own candidate Najam Sethi.

Najam Sethi, the former Chairman of PCB himself admitted after taking over from Ramiz that the government, though prepared to oust Ramiz, was encouraged by him to let Ramiz continue.

Ramiz's survival also was helped by his own contacts at the highest level. But we all knew that was not for long and eventually the sword fell.

I would have liked Ramiz to walk out of it with grace and dignity which he always showed as a player and as a popular commentator. Well aware of the flawed system that we have, this should not have been a shocker for him. Having entered the corridors of PCB in the same manner as the others did before him, he should not have presented himself to the world with his unwarranted outburst against the present Chairman Najam Sethi.

He and all of us know how such appointments come from the Patron: a back door entrance and a front door exit. Then why the bickering and bad blood after losing the prime post of the game?

It is not the Ramiz that I know of as a player or as a respectable commentator. I am sad on his unceremoniously ouster because he such an amiable individual.
Outside his assignment as PCB Chairman, he was a polite communicator with a good sense of humor. But having taken control of PCB, his behaviour I noticed had become just the opposite. Being rude and sarcastic towards the media, with staff, and even with franchise owners and sponsors of PSL, did no favours to Ramiz nor made him acceptable at least to his put on and changed personality.

I personally feel that traditions apart, he himself contributed immensely in his loss of popularity amongst the franchise owners and sponsors, media inclusive. This also rubbed on his charges at the playing level too.

The disbanding of departmental cricket, a huge mistake from Ehsan Mani's time after the Patron ordered him to do it on personal reasons, and Ramiz' support of it, did not go well where it mattered. Mor the concept of PJL, nor the idea of six domestic team to play first class cricket.

In a population of 220 million people this does not fit in. Ramiz should have opposed it.

Choosing regional teams by PCB selectors is another bad concept which he should have avoided. Personally, I feel he should have had better counsel and not have acted on the whims of his mentor.

Sethi is certainly not a cricketer but not many cricketers head a cricket board and nor many as Chairman issue a statement every day as Ramiz started to do. Which at times sounded so ill-timed. But I liked the the way he reacted to Indian cricket board jibes to put them in their place.

Now that Sethi is at the helm, things may even turn for the better. He has the pulse on the button, having tasted the game's nuances as a Chairman before and his work as a man who gave a shape to PSL as brand would help no doubt.

With his journalistic skills and contacts at all level, things are expected to change and Ramiz is no stranger to what has happened before him and after. So what's the point of moaning and groaning like someone who didn't know all that he is now confronted with.

My humble advice to Ramiz is that please don't be trapped in a political mess in which self interest is the prime pastime.