ISLAMABAD  -   Islamabad Cricket Association (ICA) President Nasir Iqbal Wednesday requested Prime Minister Imran Khan to conduct visits of Islamabad cricket grounds and witness the grounds maintained by the Association and those also, which are under MCI/CDA.

Talking to The Nation, Nasir said: “Few certain individuals, who had nothing to do with cricket and just for personal interests keep on levelling baseless allegations. The matter of fact is, ICA along with Islamabad Regional Cricket Association has not only properly maintained these cricket grounds but also conducted domestic and club matches on regular basis. I can easily claim that more than 60 percent of Pakistan cricket is being played in these state of the art cricket grounds and when Diamond Cricket ground gets busy in hosting club, PCB and other matches and umpires and we shift junior players and others to Diamond Academy Cricket Ground, which is the hub of cricket for last 40 years or so.”

He said DCA installed bowling machine worth more than Rs500,000 while they provide new balls and other cricket gears and charge only minor subscription as permitted under constitution from players and that too from only those who can afford and majority of the players didn’t pay a single penny. “I want to know from these so-called cricket promoters that where such facilities are provided to the youngsters where regular net practice is being held and around 20 matches every month being provided to the youngsters. Where such bowling machine is available? There is not a single such kind of academy available in entire Islamabad and Rawalpindi, where top international, Test and former greats pay regular visits and pass on their knowledge to youngsters.”

He said the grounds, which are under MCI/CDA are classic examples of being badly ruined and Imrn Khan being a cricketer himself could see the condition of these grounds as Bhutto Ground, National Ground and F-9 Park Ground condition is no secret to anyone. “We have produced world class players at same Diamond Academy and gave Pakistan cricket team countless stars including Rao Iftikhar Anjum, Imad Waism, Hassan Ali, Shan Masood and number of others while it was Islamabad Region, which revived the careers of Yasir Hameed, Umar Gul, Shoaib Akhtar, Shoaib Malik, Muhammad Hafeez, Azhar Ali, Sohail Tanveer, Muhamad Aamir and number of others. We are on a mission and that is to help the youth and stop them from falling prey to anti-social elements. For the last 20 years or so, Islamabad is a role model for entire Pakistan and even international stars were always full of praise for these international-standard cricket grounds. We have made cricket grounds open for all. When things are going smooth and every player is enjoying the top class coaching and training being offered at DCA then all of a sudden just to appease his one close aide Abid Kiyani, who is occupying National Ground for last several years, Mayor Islamabad Sheikh Ansar, is trying to deprive the youth from fulfilling their dreams.”

He said such actions will cost Pakistan cricket as Islamabad is like nursery of providing fresh blood to national team for last many decades.