The Pakistan Cricket Board (PCB) here on Monday announced the award of its Players Central Contracts for 2018-19 to 33 players in five categories.
The decision to demote Peshawar Zalmi all-rounder was reportedly taken by Director Cricket Operations Haroon Rashid, Chief Selector Inzamamul Haq, Director Academies Mudassar Nazar and was approved by PCB Chairman Najam Sethi.
Prolific batsman Babar Azam has been rewarded for his efforts as he has been elevated to the top category.
Hafeez has played 50 Tests, 200 One-day worldwide and 83 Twenty20 global matches for Pakistan during his career which started in 2003. PCB had earlier provisionally suspended Shezad for failing a dope test. National team captain Sarfraz Ahmed, Shoaib Malik, Mohammad Amir, Yasir Shah and Babar Azam were included in Category A.
Even though he was part of Pakistan's squad on their tour to Zimbabwe last month, he did not feature in any of the five ODIs.
"To recognize performers on the domestic circuit as well as to encourage the continuing development of emerging cricketers from the junior cricket level" an "E" category has been added which stretches the categories to five from four a year ago.
Veteran all-rounder Mohammad Hafeez and Test batsman Asad Shafiq have been handed B category contracts alongside Fakhar Zaman, Hasan Ali, Shadab Khan, and Faheem Ashraf.
Senior player Muhammad Hafeez who was demoted to Category B under the new central contract, is mulling not signing the new contract, sources informed Geo News.
The fresh deals, which followed a fresh three-year agreement between the board and the players', see the playing staff's monthly remuneration go up between 25-30 per cent.
The newly agreed formula also sees an increase of 20 percent in the match fee across all categories.
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