PCB seeks Zardari's advice on cricketing ties with India

The PCB Chairman Ejaz Butt has sought the advice of President Asif Ali Zardari on cricketing ties with India if they pull out of Januray's Test tour.

updated: December 17, 2008 15:15 IST
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The Pakistan Cricket Board Chairman Ejaz Butt has sought the advice of President Asif Ali Zardari on future cricketing ties with India if they pull out of next month's Test tour.

Butt met with President Zardari in Islamabad on Tuesday to brief him about issues dealing with India's tour to Pakistan and the future line of action, a PCB official said. "Yes, the Chairman called on the President to discuss cricket matters," said the PCB official without giving details.

But well-informed sources said Butt had discussed with the President the options available before Pakistan if India decides to snap their tour.

"The PCB Chairman took the advice of the President on the possibility of Pakistan also suspending cricket ties with India which could lead to Pakistani players not being allowed to play in the Twenty20 tournaments in India," one source said.

He said Butt had spoken to President Zardari to find out the government's policy on India and also informed him about the PCB back up plans incase India refuses to tour.

"Butt has told the President that the Board is making arrangements to reach an understanding with Sri Lanka to tour Pakistan from last week of January," one source said. There is mounting pressure on the Board to stop pleading before India to go ahead with tour as per schedule.

Some sections of the society also wants PCB to cut cricketing ties with India if they don't visit Pakistan next month.

Immediately after last month's Mumbai terror attacks, the PCB came under fire for saying it would send its players to play in the Champions League in India, while other countries were not willing to send their players, which eventually led to the postponement of the tournament to next year.

The sources said Butt had also briefed the President about future plans of the Board and informed him that if India series was called off, the PCB would face a financial crunch to some extent.

The PCB has said that it is still waiting for a final word from India on the forthcoming tour.

"We are expecting an official answer later this week," one official said.