Tournament is scheduled to begin from August 6
Despite all the hiccups and hurdles from the Board of Control for Cricket in India, the Kashmir Premier League (KPL) is going on as per plan with the opening match to be played on August 06.
Six teams will contest in a 10-day cricketing event which will end on August 17 in Muzaffarabad.
The teams include Rawalakot Hawks, Kotli Lions, Mirpur Royals, Muzaffarabad Tigers, Overseas Warriors and Bagh Stallions.
It was first reported last week that the BCCI had contacted other cricket boards and warned them against giving their players permission to participate in the league.
According to media reports, the BCCI threatened that players who will take part in the league will not be allowed to enter the country or work in Indian cricket at any level or in any capacity.
Moreover, the board also wrote a letter to the International Cricket Council (ICC) to not recognise the Pakistan Cricket Board’s approved KPL.
The report stated that the BCCI’s position in its letter is that Kashmir is a disputed territory; hence no matches in such territories should have ICC’s approval.
PCB also decided to take the matter to the game’s governing body and termed the BCCI move was against the spirit of the gentleman’s game.
“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 league,” the board said. “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 PCB will raise this matter at the appropriate ICC forum and also reserves the right to take any further action that is available to us within the ICC charter,” PCB concluded.
The BCCI’s move also affected the participation of foreign players in the league, with most of them, decided to pull themselves out from the competition.
According to the KPL President Arif Malik, Tillakaratne Dilshan and Herschelle Gibbs will be participating in the tournament.
I have decided not to participate in the KPL because of the political tensions between India and Pakistan over kashmir issues. I don’t want to be in the middle of this , it would make me feel uncomfortable. #KPL2021 #Kashmir #india #Cricket #Pakistan #ENGvIND #TheHundred— Monty Panesar (@MontyPanesar) August 1, 2021
Meanwhile, England’s Monty Panesar has excused himself from taking part in the inaugural edition of the league.
Former Sri Lanka captain Tillakaratne Dilshan, ex-South African cricketer Herschelle Gibbs and four former England cricketers – Matt Prior, Monty Panesar, Phil Mustard and Owais Shah – were drafted for the league.
In the opening match, Shahid Afridi’s Rawlakot Hawks will face Shoaib Malik’s Mirpur Royals on August 6, while Bagh Stallions and Kotli Lions will be in action on August 7.
Nineteen matches will be played in the tournament, with 12 set to be day and night affairs which are as follow:
August 6: Mirpur Royals vs Rawlakot Hawks
August 7: Bagh Stallions vs Kotli Lions
August 7: Overseas Warriors vs Muzaffarabad Tigers
August 8: Mirpur Royals vs Bagh Stallions
August 8: Rawlakot Hawks vs Kotli Lions
August 9: Overseas Warriors vs Mirpur Royals
August 9: Rawlakot Hawks vs Muzaffarabad Tigers
August 10: Muzaffarabad Tigers vs Kotli Lions
August 10: Bagh Stallions vs Overseas Warriors
August 11: Rawlakot Hawks vs Bagh Stallions
August 11: Kotli Lions vs Mirpur Royals
August 12: Bagh Stallions vs Muzaffarabad Tigers
August 12: Rawlakot Hawks vs Overseas Warriors
August 13: Overseas Warriors vs Kotli Lions
August 13: Muzaffarabad Tigers vs Mirpur Royals
August 14: Qualifier (Team 1 vs Team 2)
August 15: Eliminator 1 (Team 3 vs Team 4)
August 16: Eliminator 2 (Loser of Qualifier vs winner of Eliminator 1)
August 17: Final (Loser of Qualifier vs winner of Eliminator 1)