Board to evaluate before making final decision
The Pakistan Cricket Board (PCB) has publicly accepted for the first time that the United Arab Emirates (UAE) is now the ‘preferred venue’ for hosting the remaining matches of the Pakistan Super League (PSL) 2021.
The country’s premier T20 competition was postponed indefinitely in early March after seven positive coronavirus cases amongst players and staff members of different franchises.
Soon after the postponement, Karachi was identified as the venue to host the remaining matches of the PSL 2021 from June 1 to June 20.
However, in a press release issued by the PCB on Friday, the board admitted that the UAE is now the ‘preferred venue’ for the remainder of the PSL’s sixth edition and that the board is now working on figuring out how to successfully organise the remaining matches.
“The PCB and the six franchise owners met today via a Zoom call to discuss the remaining 20 matches of the PSL 2021,” read the statement. “The UAE has emerged as a preferred venue for the remaining 20 matches. As the holiday period has already started in both the countries, the PCB will use this time to work with the Emirates Cricket Board to check if the event can be successfully delivered within the available time.
“During the holiday period, the PCB will work on a revised tournament schedule, while it will liaise with the ECB in relation to finalising playing and training facilities, hotel bookings, ground transportation and visitors’ visas. PCB will carry out a detailed financial and risk assessment as well as cost analysis before reporting back to the franchises, who will then review before a decision on the event venue is confirmed.”
Earlier on Friday, few sports journalist reported on Twitter that that the PCB has cancelled the hotel bookings for the remaining PSL matches in Karachi.
PCB has cancelled their hotel booking (407 rooms) for PSL in Karachi. They either moving to UAE or pushing the league further. Decision in one hour. #PSL6— Umar Farooq Kalson (@kalson) May 7, 2021
In a report on ESPNCricinfo earlier in the week, it was reported that the franchise owners have asked the PCB to host the remaining matches in the UAE after the postponement of the Indian Premier League (IPL) 2021 because of Covid-19 outbreak and because of the rising cases in Pakistan as well.