PSL-6: India’s broadcast crew expelled from Abu Dhabi; event may be shifted to Sharjah if PCB fails to get approval for broadcasters; Pakistan team departure for England delayed

By our correspondent

KARACHI: The Pakistan Cricket Board (PCB) is under an immense pressure as it has been confronting with various issues in holding the Pakistan Super League (PSL) remaining matches in the UAE.

According to sources India’s broadcasters have been expelled from Abu Dhabi despite having spent a couple of days in isolation after the Abu Dhabi health ministry had expressed reservations over their stay there. Sources say that they have been sent to Dubai and will spend a seven-day quarantine. Sources say that the PCB is mulling various options and one of the option is to shift the event to Sharjah if the issue was not resolved. Meanwhile it has been learnt that the PCB has been able to negotiate successfully with the England Cricket Board (ECB) the re-adjustment of Pakistan’s departure for England. Sources said that following successful negotiation it is expected that Pakistan’s departure for England will be delayed for a few days in order to get a few more days for the PSL.

National cricketers were to leave for England on June 23 as per original schedule. However sources said that the actual matches schedule during England series will not be affected. And, meanwhile, PCB confirmed that the national team will now depart for England on June 25 instead of June 23.

“The PCB and the franchise owners this afternoon met in an online session to discuss the progress made in the staging of the remaining 20 HBL PSL 6 matches. During the session, the PCB also provided a number of updates,” the PCB said. “Some of the updates provided and decisions made are: Pakistan men’s team to now depart for England on 25 June instead of 23 June,” it added.

“HBL PSL 6 to now end on 24 June instead of 20 June, as planned earlier while departure for England on June 25 will mean only three double-headers, if the event commences on June 7,” the Board said. The PCB said that franchises were updated on the 16 production company crew who are now isolating in Dubai after being allowed entry in Abu Dhabi last week.

“NCEMA to decide on Wednesday afternoon if they will grant exemptions to 16 production crew to work in Abu Dhabi from 5 June to make 7 June start possible,” it said.

“The PCB to continue to engage with the Abu Dhabi government. The franchise owners appreciated PCB efforts and acknowledged the hardships faced in the present landscape. Franchise owners keen for the remaining matches to be played in the UAE,” it added.

The Board confirmed that Gladiators skipper Sarfaraz Ahmed and five others landed in Abu Dhabi on Tuesday. Multan Sultans included Blessing Muzarabani in place of Obed McCoy. The Board said that the seven-day isolation for those who arrived on charter flights from Pakistan ends on Wednesday afternoon (today). Islamabad United and Lahore Qalandars to train on Wednesday (today) under Sheikh Zayed Cricket Stadium lights.