In a sight that surprised many, Pakistan‘s junior chief selector Sohail Tanvir, was seen taking the field in an ongoing US-based franchise T20 league earlier this week. The former Pakistan bowler went to play for the Premium Paks in the American Premier League (APL) soon after announcing Pakistan U19’s squad for the following year’s World Cup. Justifiably, his decision to play in the APL has come under severe criticism, raising questions about conflict of interest.
According to news agency PTI, a PCB official said Tanvir had permission to play in the league at the time of his appointment as the national junior selector, a strange ruling even though Tanvir’s role at the PCB is a paid position.
Tanvir last played against Premium Canadians in the league, which is yet to be approved by the USA Cricket Council; he scored 31 runs and registered figures of 2/15.
This development has also spotlighted senior chief selector Wahab Riaz, who is yet to formally retire from the T20 format. Last month, Riaz announced Pakistan’s senior men’s squad for the three-match Test series against Australia.
Interestingly, after retiring from international cricket, Pakistan team director Mohammad Hafeez committed to focusing solely on his administrative responsibilities, refraining from active participation in T20 leagues. The stark difference in approach between Hafeez and Tanvir’s current involvement in a franchise league while holding a critical selectorial position underscores the inconsistent stance on conflict of interest within the PCB.
The PCB’s history with addressing such issues had earlier come into question with the treatment meted out to former chief selector Inzamam-ul-Haq. In a similar scenario, Inzamam was compelled to resign when it was revealed that he was a partner in a sports management company alongside Mohammad Rizwan and prominent player agent Talha Rehman.
While former Pakistan players in administrative roles seemingly violate the conflict of interest policy, the senior team continues to suffer on the field. The Shan Masood-led Pakistan side conceded a series defeat to Australia Down Under, facing a 79-run defeat in the second Test in Melbourne. Pakistan are yet to win a Test match in Australia since 1995 and haven’t won a series in the longest format Down Under so far.