ISLAMABAD: Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif on Monday removed Zaka Ashraf as chairman of the Pakistan Cricket Board and appointed an 11-member ad-hoc committee to run the affairs of the PCB.
Sharif, who is also the Patron-in-Chief of the PCB, appointed former interim PCB chief Najam Sethi, PCB ex-chairman Shaharyar Khan and former Test cricketers Iqbal Qasim and Zaheer Abbas among the ad-hoc committee members.
Islamabad Cricket Association president Shakil Shaikh, who is also one of the members of the committee, said Ashraf was removed because of ”mishandling Pakistan’s case in the recent changes brought in the ICC.”
Pakistan abstained from the voting in the ICC Board meeting last week in which the big three cricket nations, India, Australia and England, got a majority of the powers in the sport’s governing body, securing the required eight votes from the 10 full members.
Sri Lanka also abstained from the voting on the grounds that it needed more time to look into the changes of the ICC setup.
Ashraf was restored last month by a divisional bench of the Islamabad High Court after he was suspended last year on grounds of not holding transparent elections for PCB chairman.
Shaikh said Ashraf’s removal will ”bode well” for the PCB.
”It’s a good decision by the prime minister and now every decision will be made on merit,” Shaikh told The Associated Press.
Shaikh also alleged that Ashraf was involved in bungling the finances of the PCB and also failed to handle its administrative, management and international affairs.
Ashraf returned home early on Monday from Singapore after attending the ICC Board meeting. He made several attempts to seek the prime minister’s views on the changes in the ICC before going to Singapore, including writing a letter. However, he didn’t succeed in meeting with Sharif.
In some of the major changes since he was restored, Ashraf appointed former Test opening batsman Aamir Sohail as chief selector and was due to finalize Pakistan’s batting coach, fielding coach and the head coach.
The coach-finding committee comprising Javed Miandad, Wasim Akram and Intikhab Alam had shortlisted six candidates for the three vacant posts.