PCB announces competitive 2019-20 domestic season
NEW SYSTEM: Ehsan Mani hopes the new steps will enhance the standard of cricket in Pakistan
Lahore - The new structure will give importance to club cricket,
Pakistan Cricket Board (PCB) on Saturday unveiled a competitive 2019-20 domestic cricket structure, which will focus on the improvement of first-class cricket and create sustainable success at international level.
The new structure will give importance to club cricket, provide the best cricketing environment to young talents, reward top performers, create employment opportunities to former cricketers and qualified coaches, and bridge the gap between domestic and international cricket. The set-up has come into existence following the Government of Pakistan's approval on August 9 of the constitutional amendments, which were notified to the PCB on August 19, meaning the 16 regions have now been absorbed into the newly formed associations.
The new domestic structure will be based on a three-tiered bottom-up approach; providing a clear pathway for the aspiring cricketers to graduate to the top level, bringing in more young and talented cricketers in the system.
The three-layered structure will function as follows:
In the first tier, the 90 city cricket associations will be responsible for organising a club and school cricket in their respective jurisdictions and subsequently forming their city cricket teams.
In the second tier, the city cricket teams will participate in intra-city competitions within the jurisdiction of their cricket associations.
In the third tier, the best performing players from the intra-city competitions will form the six respective cricket association side that will participate in the PCB-organised tournaments.
There will also be three selectors working with a cricket association each.
Pakistan's cricketing season 2019-20 will commence from September 14 with the first round of the Quaid-e-Azam Trophy, the country's premier first-class tournament.
A total number of 31 matches - including the final - will be played, with every team playing 10 matches, home and away, on double round-robin basis.
With the commencement of the World Test Championship, red-ball cricket remains a primary focus. The context behind the new scheduling will provide players with an opportunity to stake their claim and to equip themselves for the pressures of the Test Championship.
The first-class and non-first-class tournaments will run simultaneously, providing the six associations depth to choose the best XI for their first-class matches. The same will be the case for the List 'A' and T20 cricket.
The PCB has decided to implement kookaburra balls across these tournaments to help prepare domestic cricketers better for international cricket.
To support domestic cricket and provide and improve the cricket environment for the professional cricketers, the board has taken measures to upgrade the quality of playing facilities, including pitches, outfields, player and umpire dressing rooms and media/broadcast working areas.
In this relation, the PCB is committed to spending over 2 billion Pakistani rupees in upgradation of stadia in Karachi, Lahore, Multan, Rawalpindi and Quetta.
PCB Chairman Ehsan Mani said: "We are delighted to announce that we have achieved the target of reforming our domestic structure. One of the key priorities of this PCB administration is to enhance the quality of cricket, which will in due course also begin to reflect on our on-field performances at the international level."
"We want to develop consistency in our performances, across all formats, at the apex level so these reforms were pertinent," he added.