LAHORE – The Pakistan Cricket Board (PCB) on Thursday announced a three-month financial support package for the unemployed national women cricketers in line with its duty of care policy.
The proposal was put forward by the women’s wing, headed by Urooj Mumtaz, which was subsequently approved by PCB Chairman Ehsan Mani. Under this scheme, 25 women cricketers will benefit and will receive a monthly stipend of Rs 25,000 each from August to October. The 25 women cricketers were selected following a selection criterion, which included featuring in the 2019-20 national domestic season; are not contracted for the 2020-21 season; and are presently without a job, contract or business.
The decision to offer three-month financial support package to 25 women cricketers was taken after analysing the present economic challenges due to the Covid-19 pandemic, which have also affected cricket activities. In June, the PCB had announced a list of women’s contracted players, which included nine centrally contracted cricketers and as many emerging contracted players. These are 12-month contracts, which commenced on 1 July 2020. The latest PCB decision means 43 women cricketers will now be supported by the PCB.
Urooj Mumtaz said: “The Covid-19 pandemic has brought a halt to all women cricketing activities worldwide. This has adversely affected our women cricketers, some of whom are the sole breadwinners of their families. “As the women’s game is making steady progress, it was imperative that the PCB came up with this scheme to not only protect and support our players but to also make them understand and realise that the PCB values them and will look after them in difficult times.
“Forty-eight players featured in the 2019-20 national domestic season out of which 25 became eligible to benefit from the scheme. The remaining players are either contracted by the PCB or employed elsewhere. “I am grateful to my team as well as the PCB Chairman and Chief Executive who acknowledged the issue and made a decision which will go a long way in our endeavours to promote, develop and grow women’s cricket in Pakistan.”
In an identical scheme to help the affected combat the present challenges, the PCB, in May, had offered one-time support to 161 stakeholders, including former men’s first-class cricketers, match officials, scorers and curators.