PSL teams landed in Abu Dhabi; 25 players, officials, including Sarfaraz, yet to get visas; flights from India, South Africa also get landing permission

By our correspondent

LAHORE: After a series of uncertainty eventually two chartered flights from Karachi and Lahore, carrying over 200 players and officials of the PSL teams, safely landed in Abu Dhabi today short while ago.

Initially, the flights from Pakistan were set to depart at 1pm on Thursday which were delayed until 3pm and again delayed until 5pm due to some technical issues, the sources said.

As many as 25 players and officials have not yet been issued UAE visas. According to the Pakistan Cricket Board (PCB) they would be transported to Abu Dhabi via separate chartered flight once they get visas. Till then they would live in the biosecure bubble in their respective hotels.

Gladiators skipper Sarfraz Ahmad is also waiting for visa. Fast bowler Mohammad Moosa, Mohammad Hasnain, Imran Senior and left-handed batsman Umar Amin, Zeeshan Ashraf, Zaid Alam, Abrar Ahmed, Imran Randhawa and rookie stumper Mohammad Haris are are yet to get visas.

Gladiators all-rounder Mohammad Nawaz is in South Africa. He will travel with the South African players and broadcast crew to Abu Dhabi. Earlier in the day chartered flights from South Africa and India, carrying broadcasters and players, had been denied landing permission by the UAE.

However PCB confirmed just now that chartered flights from India and South Africa have been given landing permission in Abu Dhabi. “Flights from India and South Africa, carrying broadcasters and players, have been granted landing permission by the UAE authorities,” the PCB spokesman said. “The chartered flights from these countries will fly to Abu Dhabi soon,” the spokesman added.

The spokesman added that the schedule of the tournament would be announced in the next couple of days. Those who will reach Abu Dhabi will quarantine for seven days. The PCB earlier in the day also held a virtual meeting with the franchises owners to take them into confidence over the unexpected delay of the chartered flights from South Africa and India.