LAHORE - The Pakistan Cricket Board (PCB) Monday has issued a show cause notice to Sarfraz Nawaz for interacting with media and making alleged defamatory remarks against the board and its officials. Sarfraz reportedly interacted with different news channels without seeking permission from the board which according to PCB is a “violation of the terms and conditions of Sarfraz’s appointment as a Cricket Consultant for Zone-4 and a breach of contract he signed with the board”.

Seeking explanation for his misconduct, the notice asked Sarfraz “to explain in writing within a period of seven days as to why his contract as Cricket Consultant should not be terminated with immediate effect and why PCB should not avail other legal remedies”.

In his interview with two separate newspapers on Jan 30, Sarfraz offered vehement criticism on a number of issues including the workings of the PCB and their handling of the Mohammad Amir case along with the Board of Governors member’s alleged joyrides, while also targeting the PCB’s Chief Operating Officer Subhan Ahmad in general and unsubstantiated terms.

According to sources close to the PCB, the real reason for Sarfraz’s salvos aimed at the Board are centered on his demand for a pension from the Board which is being blocked at the highest levels – exactly in accordance with the rules. What Sarfraz refuses to acknowledge despite being explained this in detail is that the rules dictate that anyone employed by the Board in any capacity cannot be paid a pension. Many former cricketers in the employ of the Board have been treated similarly. But Sarfraz feels that he must be treated in an exclusive manner – in absolute disregard of the rules.

The casual observer would be forgiven to show some sympathy to Sarfraz’s ‘plight’ until one considers the more than reasonable compensation he has been receiving from the PCB – indeed said to be nearly eight times his pension! To be specific, his retainer is Rs 100,000 per month, while on the days he is on a coaching assignment with the players at the National Cricket Academy or elsewhere, he receives Rs 15,000 as daily allowance, in addition to the expense on his board and lodge. His overall yearly package comes to around Rs 2.5 million a year!

What is really mind boggling is that in a country where many ex-cricketers are struggling to make ends meet but choose to go about their daily lives without a whimper and with dignity, we have the ungrateful likes of Sarfraz making outlandish claims of impropriety, to further a cause which is downright improper in so many ways.