The Pakistan Cricket Board (PCB) has reduced the number of players on central contracts from 33 to 19, with veteran middle-order all-rounders Mohammad Hafeez and Shoaib Malik being the most high-profile players axed.
The Pakistan Cricket Board today announced list of central contracts for the 2019-20 season.
— Pakistan Cricket (@TheRealPCB) August 8, 2019
Malik and Hafeez remain available for selection, the board added.
Babar Azam, Sarfaraz Ahmed and Yasir Shah are now the only three players in the A category. Asad Shafiq, Azhar Ali, Haris Sohail, Imam-ul-Haq, Mohammad Abbas, Shadab Khan, Shaheen Shah Afridi and Wahab Riaz have all been placed in the B category.
Abid Ali, Hasan Ali, Fakhar Zaman, Imad Wasim, Mohammad Amir, Mohammad Rizwan, Shan Masood and Usman Shinwari have been awarded C category contracts.
PCB Managing Director Wasim Khan congratulated the players who were offered central contract for the next season.
“We have significantly increased the financial value of the 2019-20 retainers across each category,” said Wasim. “This is over and above what had been agreed in the current agreement, which is due to run until 2021. The PCB has set high standards and targets in its strategic plan for the upcoming season. We want to attach a high value to receiving a central contract. We have complete faith and confidence that these players will set-up and produce on-field performances that will help us collectively achieve our objectives and targets.”