Ehsan Mani calls PM Imran Khan to discuss his ‘future with PCB’

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PCB Chairman Ehsan Mani. Photo: File.

ISLAMABAD: Pakistan Cricket Board (PCB) Chairman Ehsan Mani Monday called on Prime Minister Imran Khan for a one-on-one meeting which he later termed “a general catch up,” The News reported Tuesday.

The PCB Chairman, when asked to share the details of the meeting said: “I am sorry, I cannot comment on private matters.”

When approached for a comment, a minister, who always stays close to corridors of power, said that nothing could be said of the meeting since it was personal in nature. 

“Unless and until we hear something from one of the participants, no one could say anything. Nothing has come out so far, so at this point of time, I cannot say what was discussed,” the minister said.

It is believed that the meeting was aimed at, among other things, the future formation of the PCB and matters relating to the live coverage of international cricket events for the Pakistan viewers and the PCB’s recent contract with the PTV for inland coverage promising a hefty amount of $200 million for the next four years.

The matter of immediate interest is the PCB chairman’s future association with the PCB. 

Mani’s tenure with the PCB expires on September 4 and on a couple of times in interviews with The News, he reiterated that he would never seek the second tenure unless and until the prime minister, who is also patron of the board, would direct him. It is believed that Mani’s meeting with Imran Khan was more about his future association with the board.

It is expected that Mani will be replaced near the end of the forthcoming T20 World Cup to be held in October/November most likely in UAE. Mani must have told the patron his utility for the PCB during and after the World Cup that is expected to fetch Pakistan a huge return as a participating nation and other amounts.

No one knows more about the ICC’s finances earning and spending than Mani who also heads the ICC finance committee. The likes of former Test cricketer Rashid Latif have already tweeted that Mani has tendered his resignation, the claim that Mani had termed ‘Made up by Mr Latif” in a message to The News.

When it comes to determining the association of Mani with the PCB, it entirely depends on the patron’s decision that possibly would not come but closer to the start of September.

It is also believed the matters relating to the PCB’s marketing, finance departments with recent contracts with the PTV and others also came under discussion. Different available options to ensure the live coverage of coming international series for the Pakistani viewers were also discussed.

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