BCCI snubs PCB, rejects invitation to attend PSL final
Islamabad: The Pakistan Cricket Board (PCB) chairman Ehsan Mani said that the BCCI has rejected its invitation to attend the PSL final to be held on March 17.
PCB chairman Mani said they had sent invitations to the ICC and all its affiliated boards to attend the Pakistan Super League (PSL) summit clash but the world body’s chairman Shashank Manohar, who is an Indian, and BCCI acting-president C K Khanna had cited personal engagements for their unavailability.
“Both Khanna and Manohar have refused to visit Pakistan to watch the final of the tournament citing personal engagements,” Mani said.
Mani, however, said ICC chief executive Dave Richardson will be in Karachi to watch the game.
Mani said invitations were sent out to senior officials of India, England, Ireland, Bangladesh, Zimbabwe, Australia, New Zealand, South Africa and Sri Lanka cricket boards before relations between India and Pakistan had deteriorated after the ghastly Pulwama terror attack.
“The idea behind sending the invitations is that when they come and see for themselves the arrangements for the final it will change the perception of people around the world about security in Pakistan and convince them it is safe to play international cricket in Pakistan,” he said.
Asked if Prime Minister Imran Khan would attend the PSL final, Mani refused to confirm.
A PCB official said that invitations to the ICC Chairman, CEO and heads of its affiliated boards were sent out before relations between India and Pakistan had deteriorated in the aftermath of the Pulwama attack.
Eight PSL matches, including the final, is slated to be held at the National Stadium under tight security with soldiers from the paramilitary Rangers, Frontier Corps and the Sindh Police being deputed to avert any eventuality.
Initially, the PCB had scheduled three matches in Lahore and five including the final in Karachi but due to the closure of Lahore airspace in the aftermath of the border tensions with India, all the eight games have now been shifted to Karachi.