Pakistan Super League (PSL) officials on Tuesday briefed international cricket players about security arrangements for the tournament’s final match scheduled to be held in Lahore next month.
The meeting was held in Dubai where the final was initially set to take place. The PSL had later revised its decision and announced that the final would be held in Lahore on March 7.
PSL Chairman Najam Sethi addressed the cricketers and informed them about the security situation in Pakistan in general, and Lahore in particular.
“Giles Clarke (Chairman England Cricket Board) and his team visited Lahore last month and were hugely impressed by the security arrangements we made at the stadium and the National Cricket Academy (NCA).”
He added that the government has also made a huge investment in securing the city and fool proof security to the players will be provided who will travel for the PSL final.
“Additionally we are also having internationally reputed security consultants who will to travel to Dubai in the coming days to allay the doubts and fears of the players.
We will provide detailed briefings in the days ahead and the players who travel for the final will be making a monumental contribution for passionate followers of the game in the country,” said the chairman.
Sethi has reiterated on several occasions that a special draft may be held for the PSL final so that leagues could select players who agree to play in Lahore.
Earlier, this year, the Federation of International Cricketers Association’s (FICA) had issued a security advisory to international players against visiting Pakistan.
The PSL chairman, however, had rejected the advisory and reiterated that the final will be held in Lahore.
“PSL has already received confirmation from top international players to play in Lahore and the PCB is determined to bring international cricket back to Pakistan,” a release issued by the Pakistan Cricket Board (PSB) had said.
According to PSL officials, PCB has assured foreign players that they will be provided state guest-level security.
The PSL chairman said that the security would be comparable to the protocol provided to any visiting head of state.
“We will update the international cricketers about the security arrangement as the tournament progresses,” Sethi added, saying the briefing received a positive response.
Former captains Wasim Arkam, Ramiz Raja and Shoaib Malik were also present at the meeting and encouraged foreign players to play the PSL final in Lahore.
The last time foreign cricketers played on Pakistani soil was in 2015, when a Zimbabwe side toured the country from May 19 to 31 that year. Three ODIs and two Twenty20 matches were played during the tour, all at the Gaddafi Stadium in Lahore, where the PSL 2017 final is scheduled to be held.—APP