PCB introduced divisional cricket, club leagues

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By our correspondent

LAHORE: A round of healthy discussions between Cricket Associations and the Pakistan Cricket Board to further boost and develop cricket at pathways and grassroots concluded on Friday.

In a bid to bolster pathways structure, U19 and senior divisional tournaments have been introduced, which will sit between City Cricket Association and Cricket Association levels. Divisional tournaments will provide upcoming cricketers opportunities to nurture their talents and players struggling at the first-class and Second XI to regain their rhythm and form.

Each CA will have four divisional sides. The senior divisional teams will compete in three-day double-round robin tournaments and the U19 teams will play one-day tournaments.

A club cricket structure based on three tiers has been introduced to ensure cricket continues to grow at grassroots and players aspiring to graduate to apex level get ample opportunities to prove their mettle. The clubs, based on their performances in the last season, will be split into three divisions with the promotion and relegation system.

The clubs will play at least seven matches each in summer and winter leagues.

“We had a series of fruitful discussions with the chief executives of all Cricket Associations and it makes me very happy that we have been able to reach a consensus on a pathway and grassroots structure which will further strengthen our cricket,” PCB Director High Performance Nadeem Khan said.

“It is our vision to eradicate the system of open trials as no player can establish their credentials in a span of few balls or overs. To gauge the talent of a player and provide them with the desired resources to upskill themselves in terms of skills and fitness, it is important that we have a proper structure at every level of the game,” Nadeem said.

“I want to thank all the chief executives for taking out their time to have these discussions over two days at the National High Performance Centre in Lahore, and I am sure they will go a long way in development and promotion of the game.”