ICL players hoping concession from PCB

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Lahore, Jan 5 (UNI) Six cricketers, outlawed by PCB for joining the Indian Cricket League (ICL), have decided to wait before fighting the decision in court.

''We filed a petition through our lawyer Imran Qureshi in the Lahore High Court to get a stay order against the decision yesterday because we wanted to play for Habib Bank Limited in the final of the Quaid-i-Azam Trophy which starts on Monday, but after the learned judge deferred the decision till Monday, we reconsidered our option of going to the court and decided to wait for the Governing Board's decision,'' Imran Farhat, one of the banned cricketers, told 'The Dawn'.

The other five banned players are Inzamam-ul-Haq, Shabbir Ahmed, Azhar Mahmood, Abdul Razzaq and Taufiq Umar.

The Pakistan Cricket Board (PCB) have stuck to its decision of banning players despite the influx of more cricketers to join the rebel league, even after the possibility of not being allowed to play for Pakistan national team.

With Mohammad Yousuf's case before them, no banned cricketer had the courage to reject the ICL. The prolific batsman had also signed up with the ICL but after being offered a good amount from the PCB, he preferred to disaffiliate himself from the league. Now the ICL and Yousuf are engaged in a legal battle in India.

The arbitration court's order says that until a proper decision is reached, Yousuf will not be allowed to play in the Indian Premier League, a venture of the Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI).

Imran Farhat was hopeful the Governing Board would consider their case on merit and allow them to at least represent their departmental teams in the domestic matches.

''We can now afford to wait for the Governing Board's decision regarding the matter as we also have enough time before the Pentangular Cup which is scheduled to start next month. Therefore we have advised our lawyer to act accordingly,'' he added.

''The decision to wait for the Governing Board meeting was unanimous,'' said Taufeeq Umar.

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