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PCB to resume legal case against ICC

cricket Updated: Jun 20, 2009 22:27 IST

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The Pakistan Cricket Board said on Saturday that it will resume legal proceedings against the International Cricket Council to secure the staging rights to its share of 2011 cricket World Cup matches after talks with the ICC and the three co-hosts broke down in London.

The PCB wanted Sri Lanka, Bangladesh and India to support Pakistan in a bid to hold its share of 14 limited-overs World Cup matches "under the aegis of the PCB in a safe neutral venue." "I had hoped and expected the support of my Asian co-hosts in resolving these organizational difficulties," PCB chairman Ijaz Butt, who attended the meeting, said in a statement. The ICC already agreed to pay the PCB a fee of more than $10 million as a World Cup co-host, despite Pakistan being stripped of its scheduled matches for security reasons.

Pakistan lost the rights to stage its share of the 2011 World Cup matches in April due to security fears in the wake of an attack on the Sri Lankan team by gunmen in Lahore.

Each World Cup host country is guaranteed a payment of $750,000 for every allocated match. The three co-hosts accepted at an ICC meeting in London on Monday that if any of Pakistan's 14 matches were to take place in their countries, they would not be due a fee for hosting them.

The PCB held back its legal action against the ICC for stripping it of the hosting rights while the game's governing body tried to resolve the matter and arranged a meeting among the co-hosts. "Despite the fact that these discussions had been helpfully and constructively brokered by the ICC president Mr David Morgan and ICC vice-president Mr Sharad Pawar who is also Chairman of World Cup Central Organizing Committee, no progress was made," Butt said. "This will mean that organizational issues surrounding the 2011 World Cup remain unresolved and that the legal proceedings the PCB has brought against the ICC in Dubai and in Lahore will continue." The PCB filed a separate case against the ICC in a Lahore court over the shifting of the World Cup organizing committee from Lahore to Mumbai.

The United Arab Emirates said it is willing to stage Pakistan's share of matches after successfully organizing a five-match limited-overs series between Pakistan and Australia earlier this year.

Despite failing to resolve his differences with the ICC, Butt remained hopeful that a solution can be found.

"I do hope that they will reconsider their unreasonable stance so that the legal dispute can be resolved and a hugely successful World Cup organized in 2011."

Foreign teams have stayed away from Pakistan due to growing security concerns with ICC shifting the Champions Trophy to South Africa while not a single test match was played in Pakistan last year.