As the world watched Lalit Modi’s fall from grace with mixed emotions, Pakistan followed the drama with glee. The Pakistan Cricket Board (PCB) had blamed Modi for the snub to its cricketers in the IPL players’ auction. Not one player was picked by the eight franchises, sparking rumours that it was “pre-planned”. Insulted, the PCB revoked the players’ NOCs and decided to boycott IPL and Champions League in the future.
“There is no chance of any team from Pakistan playing in the Champions League after this insult,” PCB chief, Ijaz Butt, had said earlier.
Now, Butt seems to have mellowed down and is hopeful of being invited for the Champions League. “We will surely send our T20 champions if we are invited. I have not been contacted by the Champions League officials so far, but I am hopeful we will be participating after the recent turn of things,” Butt told HT on Wednesday.
Pakistan were included in the inaugural edition last year but were left out due to the political fallout following the Mumbai attacks. “Our relations have improved and our hockey team played in the World Cup in New Delhi this year. Even the Indian government was cooperative in arranging visas for our cricketers before the IPL auction. Our Sialkot Stallions will surely go if invited,” Butt said.
MODI to meet lawyers?
Lalit Modi arrived in New Delhi amid speculation that he is set to take legal action against the BCCI. Modi had to jostle hard to get out of the airport as waiting media persons blocked his way. There is speculation that he is here to meet his lawyers.