Hassan Ali, Rizwan Offered The Highest Grade in Central Contracts By PCB
The Pakistan Cricket Board (PCB) recently announced that 20 players would be awarded central contracts. Additionally, all players will have an equalized match fee across all formats. This means that all players representing Pakistan will receive the same match fee irrespective of the division they are in or whether they have been offered a central contract or not.
These contracts will run from July 1, 2021, to June 30, 2022.
In its promoting of players, the board classifies the cricketers into categories. The categories are A, B, C, and Emerging category. The emerging category seeks to recognize and reward up-and-coming talent while providing them with a platform to break into the central contract system.
Among the four cricketers who clinched the top category to earn central contracts are Hassan Ali and Mohammad Rizwan.
Ali’s promotion comes on the heels of a missed contract last year due to injury. However, since his comeback, he has portrayed exceptional performance, gaining his position in the highest-earning category. Hassan, Pakistan’s leading wicket-taker of international cricket this year, has picked up 40 wickets in 11 matches across formats, including four five-fors and a ten-wicket haul. Rizwan, however, has been promoted from Category B to A thanks to his top-notch form this season.
This year has seen 20 players awarded contracts, down from last year, where 21 players were rewarded.
PCB Chief Executive Wasim Khan agrees that it was not an easy task to select the cricketers. He says, “Selecting 20 players amongst a big pool of quality cricketers is always a challenging task. I would like to thank the panel for their diligent work in selecting the 2021-22 central contract list against agreed criteria.”
Other cricketers who have been promoted include:
Category A: Babar Azam, Hassan Ali, Mohammad Rizwan, and Shaheen Shah Afridi
Category B: Azhar Ali, Shadab Khan, Yasir Shah, Faheem Ashraf, Fakhar Zama, and Fawad Alam
Category C: Sarfaraz Ahmed, Abid Ali, Mohammad Hasnain, Haris Rauf, Imam-ul-Haq, Nauman Ali, and Mohammad Nawaz
Emerging Category: Shahnawaz Dahani, Imran Butt, and Usman Qadir
Conversely, nine players who had central contracts in 2020-21 have missed out. They include Mohammad Abbas, Asad Shafiq, Imad Wasim, Haris Sohail, Haider Ali, Shan Masood, Naseem Shah, Usman Shinwari, and Iftikhar Ahmed. Yet, Mr. Khan offered some encouragement to the players by adding, “the door remains firmly open for these players, and they will remain in the plans of the selectors.