Players from Pakistan were absent from the first International League T20 (ILT20), which was played from January 13 to February 12 of this year.
Top players could earn a staggering USD 450,000 in the UAE-based league’s inaugural season. Shaheen Afridi, Babar Azam, and Mohammad Rizwan, however, may have received up to $900,000. A three-year contract and captaincy were also on the table.
Franchises also contacted Fakhar Zaman and Mohammad Hasnain for the first season in addition to the aforementioned three actors. Azam Khan was fact chosen by Desert Vipers for the competition, but the PCB later refused to issue him a No-Objection Certificate.
All of them were given notice that they could only participate in the league when they had free time from their national and PSL (Pakistan Super League) responsibilities. Despite this, the PCB refused to allow any of its players to take part in the competition. Ramiz Raja, the then-chairman of the PCB, had also requested payment from the Emirates Cricket Board in return for the release of the players for the league.
Najam Sethi, the head of the PCB at the moment, does not have a rigid stance on the ILT20, though. He also recently said that it would be impossible to block Pakistani players at this time because the players are also thinking about forming an association to defend their rights during a meeting of the PSL governing council.
According to Sethi, PCB, and the UAE have good connections and can negotiate using the “give and take” philosophy. At the time, it was recommended that the Pakistan Super League (PSL) should begin its upcoming season in Dubai to raise awareness of the competition and draw in players from abroad.
The PSL franchise owners disagree with this recommendation, though. They believe that the PSL would suffer if Pakistani players were released and the ILT20 was strengthened.
The sources say that Pakistani cricketers will be seen competing in the ILT20 if the current administration is in place for the next three years.