Oval controversy burning a hole in PCB's pocket
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Oval controversy burning a hole in PCB's pocket

Pakistan Cricket Board is shelling out a whopping 700 pounds per hour to lawyers it has hired to plead Inzamam's case.

india Updated: Sep 20, 2006 15:32 IST

The Pakistan Cricket Board is shelling out a whopping 700 pounds (Rs 61,000 approx) per hour to a team of lawyers it has hired to plead its case at the International Cricket Council disciplinary hearing in London on September 27 and 28.

Sources in the Board said it had hired a famous law firm, DL Piper, to represent them in the case resulting from the Oval controversy following which skipper Inzamam-ul-Haq was charged with ball tampering and bringing the game into disrepute.

"The firm has appointed three lawyers including a Pakistani, Wasim Khokar, to work with us. They are paid on an hourly basis. The senior one gets 300 pounds and the other two 200 pounds per hour," a source told PTI.

According to rough calculations, the lawyers would have had more than 50 hours of consultations with the Board and players by now.

"You can calculate for yourself how much this is costing the Board," the source said.

He disclosed that the Board was counting on the lawyers to bail them out of this difficult situation although even Inzamam was mentally was prepared to face some ban.

"But the Board has also made up its mind to lodge a quick appeal if he is banned to ensure he plays in the Champions Trophy."

The source said the lawyers had prepared a strong case and adopted a strong line after receiving a chargesheet from the ICC on the charges faced by Inzamam.

"Apparently they are in constant touch with the ICC legal experts and have also exchanged a list of witnesses they would like to cross examine at the hearing," the source added.

"The lawyers have prepared a case which is based on just cricket laws and will be taking Australian umpire Darrell Hair to task."

The lawyers will take the plea that in several cases in the past umpires had changed the ball diplomatically wihout laying any charges if they had suspicions that the ball's condition had been changed.

And since Hair and umpire Billy Doctrove decided to penalise the team five runs while changing the ball and accused them of ball-tampering, they must be strongly convinced tampering took place and would be asked to produce the evidence.

However, the board official admitted that the lawyers were still finding a defence for Pakistan's decision to not carry on playing after tea.

The Pakistan Board has already sent a letter to the ICC making it clear it does not want Hair umpiring in the Champions Trophy.

The source also said that Pakistan had decided that under no circumstances would it have Hair standing in any of its matches in India.

First Published: Sep 18, 2006 18:51 IST