PSL playoffs likely to be held in November if situation improves: CEO

The Pakistan Cricket Board is planning to hold the remaining matches of the PSL season 5 in November if the coronavirus outbreak is contained in the next few months.

Shahid Afridi of Multan Sultans celebrates after taking a wicket in a PSL match in Lahore.   -  AFP Photo

The Pakistan Cricket Board is planning to hold the remaining matches of the PSL season 5 in November if the coronavirus outbreak is contained in the next few months, its CEO Wasim Khan said on Sunday.

The PSL was suspended on Tuesday before the semifinals after the PCB revealed that a foreign player showed symptoms of the dreaded COVID-19, but Khan said the remaining matches may be held during the 10-day window available in November.

“But we have to first sit down and discuss the situation with all the franchise owners because there are also suggestions that Multan Sultans which topped the points table should be declared winners or to have these remaining matches before the PSL-6 early next year,” he told the media in a teleconference. Khan, however, allayed concerns about a financial crisis, at least for the foreseeable future.

“The Coronavirus pandemic has affected the entire world and sports globally. In this crisis time, at present, we have money and are not facing any financial crisis,” he said.

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He also confirmed that the Board had suffered a loss of "approximately around 200 million rupees due to loss of gate money and some sponsorship revenues.”

He, however, said the Board had earned considerably from the sale of television, radio, digital media and sponsorships in the PSL.

Khan also noted that the PCB had suffered revenue losses of around USD 3 to 4 million due to the postponement of the ODI and Test match against Bangladesh which was to be held in April but has been postponed due to the coronavirus pandemic.

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He said the Board was in search of new sponsors and broadcasters for its domestic and international matches. Responding to a question, Khan said at the moment, Pakistan’s next commitments were tours of Ireland, the Netherlands and England from June onwards while there are plans to start the new domestic season from September-October.

“But everything will depend now on how this coronavirus situation develops. It is a big challenge for all sports and sports world bodies, including cricket.”

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