After the IPL 2021 came to a halt due to Covid-19 cases in as many as four franchises, the Pakistan Cricket Board (PCB), too, is considering shifting their remainder of the Pakistan Super League (PSL) 2021 to the UAE.
Similar to the IPL 2021, the sixth edition of the PSL was also suspended in early March, after completion of 14 of the scheduled 34 matches, following multiple covid cases in players and staff members.
Now, the PCB is set to resume the tournament from June 1 with the final on June 20; all the matches will take place at the National Stadium, Karachi.
While it seemed confirmed that the remaining PSL 2021 will be played in Karachi, however, with Pakistan also observing a recent surge in covid cases, it is up to the health authorities to allow the board to contest the tournament in Pakistan. If the board doesn’t get permission to host the competition in its parent country, they are ready to move the tourney to the UAE, where the IPL 2020 was held successfully.
“Now, the National Command and Operation Centre (NCOC) will announce the decision. If it decides that the league should be resumed, we will bio-secure Karachi and all matches would be played there,” a PCB spokesman was quoted by news agency Reuters as saying.
“If the NCOC does not give the go-ahead to PCB for holding matches in Karachi, we will consult the franchises to hold the rest of the tournament in the UAE,” he added.
Franchises ask PCB to move PSL 2021 to UAE
While the board awaits the authority’s decision, all the six franchises have asked the PCB to move the remaining games out of Karachi to the UAE because of the spike in Covid-19 cases in Pakistan, which has recorded around 4500 cases per day for the past week and is already in a partial lockdown.
According to ESPNcricinfo, the board has received a letter from the franchises last week and it is believed to be considering the request and reviewing current plans, taking learning from the IPL fall-out. The teams are to assemble in Karachi by May 23 to begin their mandatory seven-day quarantine.