Dubai, The Pakistan Cricket Board (PCB) on Thursday reiterated that the final leg of the HBL Pakistan Super League (PSL), comprising eight matches, including the March 17 final, will be held in Lahore and Karachi as per the original schedule with all the six franchisees and their international stars throwing their weight behind the decision.
The announcement was made by the PCB Chairman Mr Ehsan Mani in a press conference at the Dubai International Stadium ahead of Lahore Qalandars and Karachi Kings’ match. The media conference was attended by the franchise owners, barring Peshawar Zalmi’s Javed Afridi, who had to leave earlier due to a prior commitment.
I just want to reconfirm that the eight HBL PSL matches will be played in Pakistan as scheduled, said Mr Mani.
I would like to thank my colleagues here sitting alongside me for their support in this. There was no doubt in anyone’s mind that the HBL PSL will continue as business as usual, as we planned. This is a unanimous decision of all of us, he added.
Mr Mani showed gratitude towards foreign players for maintaining their earlier commitment to Pakistan.
I am also very grateful to our overseas players who are ready to come to Pakistan. All those who had given their commitment before the start of the event are still with us. They have been supportive and there is no one who has had a second thought.
I am also grateful to all the support staff who are working at the ground. We have a few challenges as you know at the production side that one of our production partners pulled out overnight. But then, the team got together and made sure that we had seamless transition and now I am absolutely confident that we will be in Pakistan as we had planned.
Islamabad United owner Ali Naqvi backed the decision.
As the chairman said we have a complete consensus, on behalf of Islamabad United management, ownership and all the players, including the foreign players. All of us are looking forward to playing and bringing lot of good cricket and joy to the fans in Pakistan, said Mr Naqvi.
Karachi Kings owner Salman Iqbal reiterated the promise of playing HBL PSL matches in Pakistan.
I would want to reiterate that Pakistan will have HBL PSL matches. All the eight matches will be played in Pakistan as per the consensus by the chairman, the board and all the teams. All our foreign players have confirmed to come to Pakistan and play the matches.
Quetta Gladiators owner Nadeem Omar also supported the decision.
Yes, we all have agreed from the Quetta side and I want to say that we will be there in Pakistan. There was no doubt in it, but the situation was like that you all had scepticism, but it’s removed now.
Multan Sultans owner Ali Tareen also confirmed his team and players’ participation.
One of the main points of the HBL PSL is to bring cricket back to Pakistan. So, all my players and team will go to Pakistan and I am sure all players of the other teams will also come to Pakistan.
They (foreign players) are not only enjoying playing HBL PSL, but they will also be happy to play in Pakistan.
We all are united in it and we are going to put an exciting show.
Lahore Qalandars’ Sameen Rana also shared the same sentiments.
We fully support the decision and all our players are committed to coming to Pakistan. When Lahore will play in Lahore, it will be great excitement, said Rana.
PCB Managing director Wasim Khan vowed to put up a great show.
I just want to say on behalf of myself and the executive team that after getting the support of the owners, and working really hard we have been able to make this happen. It is a great strength of unity and passion, and a lot of resilience which is based on what has been going for the last few days.
So, it’s fantastic and we are getting prepared for the HBL PSL in Pakistan. We are going to put on a fantastic event for all the supporters and the grounds are going to be sold-out. It will be a unique event and we are looking forward to it.
Source: PCB Official