Quetta Gladiators foreign category player James Faulkner on Saturday left the HBL Pakistan Super League after accusing the national cricket board of "not honouring" his contractual payments, which the PCB and the franchise categorically denied. The PCB and franchises have unanimously agreed that the Australian allrounder would not be drafted in future PSL events.
The PCB's decision came after a series of tweets made by Faulkner, who apologised to his fans and alleged the national cricket board continued to lie to him during the whole duration.
“It hurts to leave as I wanted to help to get international cricket back in Pakistan as there is so much young talent and the fans are amazing. But the treatment I have received has been a disgrace from the PCB and PSL,” he said.
According to him, he had to withdraw from the last two matches of the PSL.
The allegations prompted a quick response from the Pakistan Cricket Board. It would issue a “detailed statement” on Faulkner's allegations pertaining to non-payment.
In a tweet, the PCB said: “The PCB and Quetta Gladiators have regretfully taken note of Mr James Faulkner’s false and misleading accusations and will shortly be releasing a detailed statement on the matter.”
As soon as the tweets were published, #Faulkner became the top trend on Twitter, with mixed reactions from the users. However, journalists associated with different news channels on the microblogging site claimed the Australian cricketer “has been paid 70% of the salary” just like others in the league.
Later, the PCB and the Quetta Gladiators issued a detailed statement on its website and also shared it on Twitter that "strongly" refuted Faulkner's allegations.
“The PCB and Quetta Gladiators are disappointed and dismayed with the reprehensible behaviour of Mr James Faulkner, who was also part of the Abu Dhabi-leg of the HBL PSL in 2021, and, along with all participants, has always been treated with the utmost respect. In the seven years of the PSL, no player has ever complained about the nonfulfillment of the PCB’s contractual obligations," it read.
Instead, it added all players have only appreciated the PCB efforts to make their "stay, appearance and participation as comfortable" as possible. "This is evident that from the fact that most of these cricketers have continued to remain part of the PCB’s marquee event since 2016 and have helped the PCB to make the HBL PSL a strong and formidable brand as it stands today," it read.
Without commenting on the history of Faulkner’s misconduct over the past many years, the PCB issued a brief summary of some of the facts.
In December 2021, the board said Faulkner’s agent confirmed the offshore United Kingdom bank details to which his fee payments should be transferred. Then in January 2022, "for reasons best known to Mr Faulkner, his agent sent revised banking details of Mr Faulkner’s onshore account in Australia."
However, it added the contracted 70 per cent of Faulkner’s fee payment was transferred to his offshore UK bank account. "The receipt of this payment was acknowledged by Mr Faulkner. Accordingly, payments due to Mr Faulkner as per his contract are fully up to date."
Prior to his departure on Saturday morning, the statement further read that Faulkner caused "deliberate damage to the hotel property and as a result had to pay damages to the hotel management." The PCB later also received reports and complaints from the immigration authorities that Faulkner had acted inappropriately and abusively at the airport.
“In wake of the above, and taking serious note of Mr James Faulkner’s gross misconduct that was an attempt to bring the PCB, Pakistan cricket and the HBL PSL into disrepute, it has been unanimously agreed by the PCB and the franchises that Mr James Faulkner will not be drafted in future HBL PSL events،” it read.