Inept PCB forced postpone remainder of PSL 6 indefinitely

By: Raheel Hanif      Published: 06:56 PM, 19 May, 2021
Inept PCB forced postpone remainder of PSL 6 indefinitely

Pakistan Cricket Board Wednesday left with no option but to postpone the remaining matches of the Pakistan Super League indefinitely due to its lacklustre approach and inability to properly devise a plan to hold the event in Abu Dhabi.

The PCB and PSL franchises owners held a virtual meeting to discuss the possibility of holding the remaining matches of the PSL in Abu Dhabi, however. They could not reach a consensus over the feasibility of the plan considering the financial restraints.

Earlier, the PSL franchise had stopped the local players from getting vaccinated and reporting in the hotels to go for the proposed holding of the PSL matches in Abu Dhabi.

Sources say the PCB wanted to put more financial burden on the PSL franchise that was outrightly rejected by the franchise owners as they were already feeling aggrieved for the losses being faced by them.

The PCB and PSL franchises were already at loggerheads over the financial model of the league and only reached a consensus just ahead of the start of the PSL 6 with more yet left desired.

The news proposal by the PCB to transfer the financial burden of holding the PSL matches in Abu Dhabi on franchises did not get well with the owners as the PCB and PSL organisers failed to come up with a suitable business plan.

The current scenario has also put a question mark on the continuity and sustainability of Pakistan’s premier Twenty20 league with the incumbent administration seems to be at a loss to devise a sustainable financial model for the league that is acceptable and beneficial to all the parties.

There are also rumours of a change in the organization of the PCB with the jobs of the PCB’s top brass at the stake. Sources said Prime Minister Imran Khan is already unhappy with the PCB for the handling of the PSL issue as well as cricketing related matters including the selection fiasco that is being created at the start of every series.

The situation has also put the top PCB officials in an embarrassing situation as they used many high offices to get the nod of the United Arab Emirates government and the Emirates Cricket Board to hold the remaining 20 matches of the PSL 2021 edition in Abu Dhabi.

The inept attitude and inability of the PCB’s top officials are evident from the fact they did everything in their capacity to get the UAE’s nod but failed to devise a plan and feasibility of holding the matches abroad.

This short-sightedness of the PCB may further deteriorate the image of Pakistan cricket and could lead to inflict irreparable loss to the PSL brand in future.

The sixth edition of the PSL was postponed in early March after a couple of players and support staff tested positive for the coronavirus. Only 14 matches of the tournament had been played when the pandemic forced the PCB to suspend the tournament.

Ever since then, the PCB had been hopeful of conducting the remaining matches of the league in the UAE, as social gatherings and other sports activities remain banned in Pakistan owing to a surge in COVID-19 cases.