LAHORE: The Pakistan Cricket Board (PCB) has expressed its displeasure over reports of the Board of Cricket Control in India (BCCI) forcing retired cricketers not to participate in the Kashmir Premier League (KPL), saying that it will raise the issue with the relevant International Cricket Council (ICC) forum.The PCB was reacting to a tweet from former South African star batsman Herschelle Gibbs — who is expected to play in the league — who said: “Completely unnecessary of the BCCI to bring their political agenda with Pakistan into the equation and trying to prevent me playing in the KPL20. Also threatening me saying they won’t allow me entry into India for any cricket related work. Ludicrous.” A spokesman for the PCB said Saturday that the Pakistan Board would raise this matter at the appropriate ICC Forum and also reserved the right to take any further action that was available to them within the ICC Charter.The PCB said the BCCI had “breached international norms and the spirit of the gentleman’s game” through its interference in the internal affairs of the ICC members. “The PCB considers that the BCCI has brought the game into disrepute by issuing warnings to multiple ICC members to stop their retired cricketers from featuring in the KPL, further threatening them that they will not be allowed entry into India for cricket-related work.Such conduct from the BCCI is completely unacceptable, against the preamble of the spirit of cricket and sets a dangerous precedence, which can neither be tolerated nor ignored,” the spokesman added. The KPL is a six-team franchise model league, run by private businessmen, but with clearances from the Pakistan Government and crucially, approved by the PCB. The tournament will be played at the MuzaffarabadCricket Stadium in Pakistan-administered Kashmir, scheduled to start on August 6 with the final on August 17. Each team is named after the cities in the region —Kotli, Bagh, Mirpur, Rawalakot, Muzaffarabad and one team of overseas players — and the squads were selected through a draft process last month. According to the organisers, ShahidAfridi, Shoaib Malik, ImadWasim, Mohammad Hafeez, FakharZaman and Shadab Khan will be captains of the sides.A raft of retired foreign players had been signed up to play according to organisers, including Monty Panesar, Matt Prior, Phil Mustard, Tino Best, TillakaratneDilshan and Gibbs. But a player agent in England informed the KPL management that the BCCI had called up the ECB and Cricket South Africa and told them to withdraw their players from the league, otherwise those players would not be able to work in India. Kashmir has been the central focus of the dispute — as well as the cause of several wars — between India and Pakistan from the moment India gained independence and Pakistan was created in 1947. Both countries control part of the region but govern it separately. Political and diplomatic ties between the two countries have fluctuated over the years, though they are currently strained. The KPL has caused some internal friction as well, with franchises of the Pakistan Super League at one point unhappy that a new PCB-approved T20 league was going ahead and potentially cannibalising the PSL’s commercial space. The PSL has become the PCB’s showpiece product and the feeling among franchises was that another league, with big domestic names in it, would impact their own commercial rights and sponsor spending. The KPL will be broadcast and have a digital presence, and is attracting considerable local commercial interest.