ECB Delays Start of Pakistan’s Tour to England to Accommodate PSL

ECB Delays Start of Pakistan's Tour to England to Accommodate PSL
08.06.2021,12:06 23 0

The PSL is set to benefit after an agreement by the ECB to reschedule Pakistan’s tour of England to start later than planned. According to an announcement by the PCB, the Pakistan squad who would reach England on 23 June as per the earlier plan, will now arrive two days later, on 25 June. The itinerary of matches will undergo no change, with the first tour match, a one day international to be hosted in Cardiff scheduled for 8 July.

The PSL is due to start on 9 June and finish on 24 June. Members of the Pakistan squad involved in the PSL will benefit from the postponement of Pakistan’s tour of England by being able to take part in the final games of the PSL.

Narrow Window for Players to Train for England Series

The PCB expects a tight turnaround. Both Pakistan and the UAE are on the red list of the United Kingdom. Hence, players arriving in the UK from these locations will have to satisfy quarantine requirements for 10 days after they land there. The players are expected to be able to practice during the quarantine period. However, there will be a very narrow window between their release from quarantine and the first match of the tour. As per the revised schedule, the first ODI in Cardiff is set to begin within 13 days of the Pakistan team’s arrival in the UK.

Franchises Want Full Quota of PSL Matches

Every passing day witnesses a continual shrinking of the window within which the PCB must host the remaining games of the PSL. Pakistan were originally scheduled to leave for England on 22 June. The PCB suggested a shorter PSL tournament to allow the remaining games to be completed within the available window. But all six franchises reportedly opposed the idea of having fewer games. Various agreements between all commercial partners, the franchises and the league devised on the assumption that 20 matches remained to be played. Hence, any shortening of the PSL would have commercial implications.

Abu Dhabi Government Creates Another Hurdle

On 31 May, another roadblock hit the start of the league after the Abu Dhabi government ordered 16 production crew members to move from their hotel in Abu Dhabi to another hotel in Dubai. This could prove to be a huge hurdle as the league cannot resume until after the members of the production crew complete their quarantine requirements.

PSL Due to Begin on 9 June

As of now, the PCB appears determined to start the tournament latest by 9 June, while adhering to the exemptions sought from the National Crisis & Emergency Management Authority (NCEMA) of the UAE. The PCB was hopeful that the production crew would be allowed to leave isolation on 5 June if such exemption was granted by NCEMA. Wednesday (2 June) afternoon would also mark the end of the 7-day isolation period to be fulfilled by staff and players who came from Pakistan to the UAE on chartered flights.

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