Monday, June 24, 2024

PCB: Four uncapped women cricketers earn central contract

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Photo Credit: Pakistan Cricket Board

  • Anoosha Nasir, Eyman Fatima, Shawaal Zulfiqar and Umm-e-Hani are four players to get contract for first time     
  • Sidra Amin due to her exceptional performance in 2022-23 season promoted to A from C category
  • Ghulam Fatima, Muneeba Ali and Sadia Iqbal are the other players to get promotions in the 20-player list
  • Bismah Maroof, Fatima Sana, Nashra Sundhu, Nida Dar, Sadaf Shamas, Sidra Nawaz and Tuba Hassan have retained their respective categories
  • Players were offered contracts last week for 23 months, which was signed by all players; Players performances will be assessed after a year
  • New contracts see a maximum of 32 per cent of increase in retainers; 100 per cent increase in match fees in ODI format and 50 per cent increase in T20I format
  • Urdu version of the media release attached here

The uncapped trio of Anoosha Nasir, Eyman Fatima and Shawaal Zulfiqar are among the four players who are awarded central contracts for the first time. Umm-e-Hani, who made her debut last year against Ireland, is the fourth player to earn her maiden central contract.

Like last year, 20 players have been awarded central contracts, which are divided into four categories A, B C and D being an emerging category. 

The 20 players were offered central contracts last week for a duration of 23 months, commencing from 1 August 2023 to 30 June 2025. The performances of players will be assessed after a year. The contracts were signed by 19 players in Karachi during the series camp for South Africa. Eyman Fatima, who is not part of the white-ball series against South Africa, signed the contract in Lahore.

Captain Nida Dar and experienced Bismah Maroof have been retained in the A category, which sees a 19 per cent increase in their retainers. Sidra Amin, who is currently second in the list of top run-getters of ICC Women’s Championship 2022-25 with 535 runs from nine matches has jumped to A category from C.

The B category, which sees an increase of 32 per cent in players’ retainers, is occupied by four players. Muneeba Ali, who scored a century in this year’s ICC Women’s T20 World Cup, has been promoted from C to B category. Fast bowler Fatima Sana, who also captained Pakistan emerging women’s team in this year’s ACC Women’s Emerging Teams Asia Cup 2023 has been retained in B category along with left-arm spinner Nashra Sundhu. Aliya Riaz has been demoted from A to B category.

In the C category, wicketkeeper-batter Sidra Nawaz has retained her position, while spinners Ghulam Fatima and Sadia Iqbal have been promoted from D to C category. Diana Baig, who missed out on most of the last year due to shoulder injury and later a finger injury has been demoted to C from B category. Omaima Sohail has been placed in C category compared to B category she was in last year’s central contracts list. The C category has 19 per cent increase in players retainers.

The D category, also known as the emerging category, features a total of eight players. Leg-spinner Tuba Hassan and right-handed batter Sadaf Shamas have retained their spots in the category which will see them register a 21 per cent increase in their retainers. Left-arm spinner Anoosha Nasir, right-handed batters Eyman Fatima and Shawaal Zulfiqar, all of whom represented Pakistan U19 in the inaugural ICC U19 Women’s T20 World Cup this year, have earned their maiden contracts. Wicketkeeper-batter Najiha Alvi and off-spinner Umm-e-Hani, both of whom represented Pakistan emerging team in ACC Women’s Emerging Teams Asia Cup, are also part of D category. Syeda Aroob Shah, who captained Pakistan U19 in ICC U19 Women’s T20 World Cup, makes a comeback in central contract after missing out last year.

Anam Amin, Gull Feroza, Iram Javed, Javeria Khan and Kainat Imtiaz are the five players who have failed to retain this year’s central contract. All five players have been awarded the first-ever 11-month domestic contracts. Meanwhile, Ayesha Naseem, who retired from international cricket, is the sixth player to be left out from the contract.

Meanwhile, there is a 100 per cent increase in the match fee of players involved in an ODI match (playing and non-playing both). Also, there is a 50 per cent increase in match fees of players in a T20I match (playing and non-playing both).

Tania Mallick, Head of Women’s Cricket: “The extended contract duration reflects our anticipation of an action-packed international cricket calendar. We want our women cricketers to be fully prepared, physically and mentally, to face every challenge and celebrate every triumph that comes their way.

“The substantial increment in the monetary aspect of our women’s central contracts reflects our commitment to providing an environment where players can focus solely on their game. This also acknowledges the rising standard and influence of women’s cricket globally.

“Four outstanding players have earned their central contracts this year. This not only showcases the depth of talent in our women’s cricket but also encourages healthy competition and a spirit of excellence within the team.”

Saleem Jaffar, Chair of Women’s Selection Committee: “The selection committee is pleased to announce the players who have been awarded contracts, considering the extensive cricketing calendar that lies ahead. We believe in development of emerging talent, and these new contracts aim to give confidence in these players as they prepare for the upcoming cricket season.

“Our primary focus while awarding contracts for the next 23 months has been to recognise consistent performance and dedication displayed by the players throughout the ICC Women’s Championship cycle that began in 2022. The matches against Sri Lanka marked the inception of this evaluation, and we have precisely assessed each player’s contribution during this cycle.”

Women’s Central Contracts (1 August 2023 to 30 June 2025):

Category A (3) –Bismah Maroof, Nida Dar and Sidra Amin

Category B (4) – Aliya Riaz, Fatima Sana, Muneeba Ali and Nashra Sundhu

Category C (5) – Diana Baig, Ghulam Fatima, Omaima Sohail, Sadia Iqbal and Sidra Nawaz

Category D (8) – Anoosha Nasir, Eyman Fatima, Najiha Alvi, Sadaf Shamas, Shawaal Zulfiqar, Syeda Aroob Shah, Tuba Hassan and Umm-e-Hani

Pakistan’s schedule in the ICC Women’s Championship 2022-25:

vs South Africa (all matches in Karachi)

1 Sep – First T20I v South Africa

3 Sep – Second T20I v South Africa

4 Sep – Third T20I v South Africa

8 Sep – First ODI v South Africa

11 Sep – Second ODI v South Africa

14 Sep – Third ODI v South Africa

Oct/Nov 2023 – Pakistan tour to Bangladesh (three ODIs & three T20Is)

Nov/Dec 2023 – Pakistan tour to New Zealand (three ODIs & three T20Is)

Apr/May 2024 – West Indies tour to Pakistan (three ODIs & five T20Is)

May 2024 – Pakistan tour to England (three ODIs & three T20Is)

Additional series

Sep 2023 – 19th Asian Games, China

Oct/Nov 2023 – West Indies emerging team tour to Pakistan (three T20s and three one-days)

Jan 2024 – Pakistan U19 and Sri Lanka U19 in Bangladesh (tri-series)

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