Prime minister Imran Khan to re-nominate Mani and Asad Ali Khan for another term in the Board of Governors
The extension means Mani will continue as the PCB chairman, subject to the due formality of re-election by August this year. Mani was previously elected unopposed in 2018 for a term of three years.
Mani met Imran at the Prime Minister’s house on June 21, where Imran extended his support for Mani to carry on with the role. Mani’s first term will end in August, but according to the PCB constitution, any of the nine board members can be up for elections, so long as the individual’s total tenure as chairman “shall in no case exceed a period of six years”.
While all nine existing board members are eligible to contest the elections, historically only one of the two individuals directly nominated by the Prime Minister has become the PCB chairman. Mani was previously the only candidate to have submitted his nomination papers for the post, and all members of the Board of Governors unanimously voted for him to head the PCB. Mani had replaced Najam Sethi, who had resigned when Imran’s party Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) came into power in the federal government.
Over the last three years, Mani has revamped the functioning of the PCB, such as redrafting the board’s constitution-making in line with the practices of corporate governance. Till 2019, the PCB chairmen had the authority to act as executives of the board and could implement a policy that they had proposed themselves. This has since been curbed by diluting the power of the chairman and introducing the position of a chief executive officer.
Mani also oversaw an enormous change in the country’s domestic structure, remaking it from scratch to forego the previous departmental and regional cricket, and turning it into the side provincial team model forced upon by Imran. The change sparked a country-wide outrage as the new system was introduced at the cost of several players losing their livelihood. However, the PCB eventually created jobs for all the veteran cricketers at the association level, inviting them to take up positions at various fields within the cricket set-up, such as coaching, administration and umpiring.
Mani has mostly had a smooth ride overseeing the revival of international cricket in Pakistan, but the groundwork for that was largely laid out by the previous regime. However, one notable difference is that Mani’s administration has not had to pay any money to get other teams to tour Pakistan.
One of the other highlights of Mani’s tenure has been to bring four independent directors to the Board of Governors, including a woman for the first time in Alia Zafar. Mani rewrote the constitution in 2019, revoking the Boar of Governors’ membership and reducing the numerical strength of the cricket-playing associations from eight to three in a bid to offset their influence. Besides Zafar, the other three independent directors are Javed Kureishi (finance executive), Asim Wajid Jawad (economics expert) an Arif Saeed (economist and corporate executive). Kureishi and Saeed were appointed for three years, while Zafar and Wajid will retain their positions for two years.
Umar Farooq is ESPNcricinfo’s Pakistan correspondent