Karachi, June 13: The Chairman of the Pakistan Cricket Board (PCB) Shaharyar Khan has rubbished allegations that they bribed the Zimbabwean cricketers to tour Pakistan for a short limited over series, last month.
Khan said on Friday (June 12) that while it had paid around USD 500,000 to Zimbabwe cricket to cover their expenses for the tour but it was unfortunate there had been talk about players being bribed to tour Pakistan.
"That is not true as the tour was approved by both boards and just yesterday our Prime Minister sent a message of thanks to the Zimbabwe President Robert Mugabe for allowing his team to tour Pakistan," Khan scotched the rumours.
"In such a scenario, there is no question of bribing players," he added. Zimbabwe was the first Test side to tour Pakistan in six years after other boards refused to send their teams because of security concerns following the militants attack on the Sri Lankan team in March 2009 in Lahore.
The Zimbabwe tour was a spectacular success as the two T20 matches and three ODIs drew full houses and Khan said the board had also ended up making profits.
$12,500 to each player
"The response of the people was enough for us and vindicated our stance that international cricket needs to be revived in Pakistan," the PCB chief said.
Pakistan Cricket chief Shahryar Khan on Tuesday confirmed that a deal was struck with Zimbabwe but rubbished claims that the African side was "bribed" into touring Pakistan.
A reliable source in the board told PTI that of the total amount given by the PCB to Zimbabwe cricket they had paid their players $12,500 each.
Khan also made it clear that since the Zimbabwe tour was not part of the future tours program and a one-off engagement in future the PCB had no intention to make concessions for touring teams.
"The tour by Zimbabwe was an exception as we were keen to host an international and in return we will tour there in August," he said.
He said basically the series was on bilateral terms. "We are making every effort to revive proper international cricket in Pakistan and we have approached other boards after the Zimbabwe team's visit to send their teams to our country as we capable of providing them the best security," Khan added.
"The visit by Zimbabwe has given us confidence and we will build on the success of the tour. I am sure lot of perceptions about playing in Pakistan will have changed after this tour," he said.
"The Zimbabwe players told us they had not received such a rousing welcome anywhere before in any country and the series was also played in a secure and stable environment what more can we ask for," he said.
Khan conceded that the board was now more confident about organizing the Pakistan Super League T20 early next year and also in inviting other teams.