The new cricket management committee of the PCB has made it clear that centrally contracted players need to abide by their contractual clauses and no breach will be tolerated in this regard.
A source said that Shaheen Shah Afridi, Haris Rauf and Shahnawaz Dahani, in particular, were reminded that it is not their job to tweet in favour of who should be Pakistan’s captain.
Shaheen and Haris had tweeted openly, supporting Babar as captain and even warned that no one should think about changing him after the 0-3 series defeat against England this month.
But Shaheen has now deleted that tweet after the new board set-up, including chairman Najam Sethi, informed the players that their job was to focus on cricket and perform well as professionals for the country.
“Sethi has given out a clear message that no more shenanigans on the social media or breaches of central contracts will be tolerated from any player,” the source said.
Ramiz Raja, who was removed as chairman of the Pakistan Cricket Board (PCB) by the country’s government, had given plenty of liberty to the players during his tenure, allowing them to interact a lot on social media.
But the players have now been told that they must avoid making comments on matters which are purely the domain of the cricket board.
Pakistan captain Babar Azam said at a pre-match conference on Sunday that the changes in the board would not affect the players as they are professionals and are supposed to perform for the country.
“There have been changes but we are not concerned with that, our main focus is to win the series against New Zealand. We have no say in matters of the board,” he said.
Babar, whose Test captaincy is on the line after the whitewash against England, said that interim chief selector, Shahid Afridi had spoken to him before adding three more players to the national squad for the two Tests against New Zealand.
Pace bowlers, Mir Hamza and Shahnawaz Dahani and off-spinner, Sajid Khan were added to the squad by the new national selection committee that also includes Abdul Razzaq, Rao Iftikher and Haroon Rasheed.