By Shazia Hasan
KARACHI: Pakistan Cricket Board (PCB) Women’s Wing Chairperson Shireen Javed has extended an offer to members of the Pakistan Women’s Cricket Control Association (PWCCA) to join the PCB WomenÂ’s Wing.
Speaking to Dawn on Saturday, Shireen said she wanted to invite PWCCA members to join hands with her for the betterment of women’s cricket in Pakistan.
“They are most welcome to join us as we are also here to promote women’s cricket,” she said.
The PWCCA, headed by its founding president, the world record holding leg-break bowler Shaiza Khan (13 wickets in a Test), is currently engaged in a legal battle with the PCB in the Lahore High Court in order to prove its right of running the affairs of women’s cricket in Pakistan.
Although both Shaiza and PWCCA’s Executive Director Kiran Baluch, another Test record-holder (242 runs in a Test), stopped playing for Pakistan on principle after the PCB in 2005 established its women’s wing by taking over current Women’s Wing Chairperson Shireen Javed’s unregistered association, the Pakistan Women’s Cricket Association (PWCA), while ignoring the officially-recognised body affiliated to the International Women’s Cricket Council (IWCC), they had, however, allowed their team members to play for the PCB despite their being under contract with the PWCCA.
When asked what position she was offering to the players, Mrs Javed said: “If they are interested in playing for Pakistan, then one rule applies to all and they will have to appear for trials.”
And when asked if there were any openings for them on the administrative side, Mrs Javed said: “Yes, but only after seeing in what capacity they can serve well here.”
When reminded of Shaiza’s background and asking if she would be willing to step down for someone with such an illustrious career behind her and several playing years ahead as well, Mrs Javed said: “If I think that I cannot serve women’s cricket anymore, I’ll vacate my seat myself. But I think I am very good at what I do for now.”
Meanwhile, giving her reaction to Mrs Javed’s offer, PWCCA President Shaiza Khan said that they would never be interested in joining hands with her. “We are not interested in joining an illegally and unconstitutionally-formed Women’s Wing that has left no stone unturned to destroy in just 10 months the profile of women’s cricket in Pakistan that we raised and maintained for nine years,” she retorted.
“Today even players like the legendary batsman and PCB’s Director General Javed Miandad, who also happens to be an old family friend of Mrs Javed, has come out to say that women’s cricket should be handled independently and that the people running it are creating quite a mess,” she added.
“Mrs Javed claims that she is working for the promotion of women’s cricket out of her own passion for the game but I want to ask her that has she ever spent any of her personal money in doing so? We, on the other hand, took the team on tours all over the world and even featured in the World Cup in 1997 from our own expenses. She only uses PCB’s funds,” Shaiza pointed out.
“I challenge Mrs Javed to create her own team while discarding the PWCCA players, who are making a majority of the national team at the moment,” she added. “Mrs Javed is only heading the Women’s Wing because of her brother-in-law Ijaz Butt. Independently, she has no cricketing credentials whatsoever. The legal battle between the PWCCA and the PCB is how we prefer to settle our matters,” she concluded.