Karachi:In a twist to the dispute between Pakistan Cricket Board and International Cricket Council, the world body has threatened PCB to terminate the host agreement if the legal notice served on it over the shifting of 2011 World Cup matches is not withdrawn.
A PCB governing council member on Sunday said that Pakistan has decided to withdraw the legal notice served on the ICC after the world body chief David Morgan issued a serious threat.
"Pakistan was told if it decides to pursue legal action then the ICC would terminate its host agreement and it would not be paid a single penny from the tournament," the member, who attended a governing council meeting here last week at which PCB chief Ejaz Butt gave a briefing on the talks with the ICC, said.
"It has been decided to withdraw the legal notice served on the ICC over the decision of stripping Pakistan of 14 matches of the 2011 World Cup," the member said.
He said Butt had informed the governing council members that the ICC's stance left Pakistan with no option but to go for an out of court settlement which at least guaranteed that Pakistan cricket would benefit financially despite losing the right to host its World Cup matches at home.
"Butt said if ICC terminates the host agreement we could lose around USD 18 to 20 million which Pakistan cricket cannot afford to lose at this stage," he added.
The member said the governing council had given approval for seeking an out of court settlement with the ICC because Butt informed them that the PCB's legal advisor Mark Gay had also advised them not to pursue the matter in a court of law anymore.
Butt has publicly said that the legal action threat had played a big role in forcing the ICC to agree to an out of settlement and accept Pakistan's demands for financial compensation for losing the World Cup matches.
Pakistan is due to get USD 10.5 million as hosting fees for its share of 14 World Cup matches which would now be held in India, Sri Lanka and Bangladesh and another USD 8 to 9 million as revenues from sale of tickets, hospitality boxes and other sources.
Butt and Morgan are due to meet on August 27 in Dubai for a conclusive round of talks to end the dispute and drop the legal action.
The member said some governing council members had raised the point that instead of spending a huge money on hiring a foreign lawyer, the board should have hired a local lawyer to serve legal notice to the ICC.
"Some members noted that the chairman took the decision to serve the legal notice without taking all the council members into confidence."
PCB had reportedly paid Mark Gay around seven million rupees for serving the legal notice to the ICC.