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PCB, PSL owners set to take key decisions in wake of UAE’s own T20 league

LAHORE: The Pakistan Cricket Board (PCB) has called an emergency meeting of all the Pakistan Super League (PSL) franchise owners , to take some key decisions in the backdrop of a recent announcement by the Emirates Cricket Board to launch its own International T20 League next year which could pose numerous problems for the much popular and successful PSL.
PCB chairman Najam Sethi has already warned that if the UAE authorities continue to create hurdles in the way of the PSL, all the league matches could be shifted to Pakistan.
Though it is not easy for the PCB to host all the 35 matches of the PSL in Pakistan due to security and other issues, there are reports that all the franchises are willing to play all matches in Pakistan instead of holding majority of the matches in the UAE.
There are also reports that the PCB has proposed the Emirates Cricket Board (ECB) that if their T20 league concludes at least 35 days before the start of the PSL, then the PCB will not have any objection, otherwise all the matches would be shifted to Pakistan regardless of whether or not the foreign players agree to come here and play.
The PCB believes the PSL has become a successful brand with the Pakistanis all around the world showing great interest in it, and even second line of foreign players could make the showpiece event very exciting and colourful on Pakistan soil.
It may be mentioned here that the cost of stadium and other expenditures in the UAE are already proving too much for the PCB the grounds in Dubai and Abu Dhabi are seldom filling up for the matches. The scenario in Pakistan could be a very different one if the league matches are staged here as they could witness packed to capacity crowds as were seen during the two play-offs and the final staged in Lahore and Karachi respectively early this year in PSL-2018.
The UAE, on the other hand, is going to be hub of the cricket in the months to come since the Afghanistan Cricket Board is also holding its first T20 league in the UAE in October this year. The UAE will also play host to the T-10 league in November and then their own International T20 league in December-January.
In another development, the Indian Premier League will also organise some of its matches next year in the UAE in the wake of the general elections in India.