Pakistan Cricket Board gets its first female director

Alia Zafar, a human resources executive, has been named as one of the four independent directors on the cricket board.

A Pakistani fan cheers for her team during a 2017 match between India and Pakistan in England [File: Rui Vieira/AP Photo]

Alia Zafar has been named as one of the independent directors on the Pakistan Cricket Board (PCB), becoming the first female to have been appointed to the post in the cricket-crazy South Asian nation.

Zafar, a human resources executive, was included among four new PCB directors. The others are finance executive Javed Kurieshi, economist Asim Wajid Jawad, and corporate executive Arif Saeed.

Zafar, who has worked in senior positions in the corporate sector, was appointed for a two-year term. She has also had a stint with the United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) and the United States Agency for International Development (USAID).

The PCB’s new constitution, which came into effect last year, makes it mandatory to include at least one woman among four independent directors on its board of governors.

“I welcome the newly-appointed independent members, especially Ms Alia Zafar, the first female independent member, which is a giant step forward in enhancing the PCB’s governance structure,” PCB chairman Ehsan Mani said on Tuesday.

“The four new members bring with them a wealth of diverse knowledge that will only improve the professional outlook and working of the PCB.”

The revamped structure of the PCB has resulted in six provincial teams – Balochistan, Central Punjab, Southern Punjab, Khyber Pakhtunkhwa, Sindh and Northern – competing in premier first-class cricket tournaments.

For more than 50 years, banks fielded teams in first-class tournaments alongside city-based teams in Pakistan.

Source: Al Jazeera and news agencies