LAHORE: The newly appointed Chairman of the Management committee of the Pakistan Cricket Board, Najam Sethi chaired the first meeting of the Committee here at the National High Performance Centre on Friday.
The Management Committee received a detailed update on the HBL Pakistan Super League 8 and desired to add Quetta as the fifth venue for the eighth edition of the PCB’s annual marquee event, which is scheduled to be held from 13 February to 19 March.
To ensure Bugti Stadium was ready to host the HBL PSL 8 matches, the Committee agreed that PCB will work closely with the local administration for upgradation and renovation of the Bugti Stadium, while separate discussions will take place between PCB security experts and local authorities to ensure the safety and security of all the participants, officials and spectators.
Najam Sethi said: “I am delighted that seven years after launching the HBL Pakistan Super League, I am today announcing our commitment to add Bugti Stadium in Quetta as the fifth venue for our marquee event. Bugti Stadium is the home ground of Quetta Gladiators and we still remember the incredible scenes when the Gladiators visited the city after winning the 2019 tournament.
“The passionate cricket fans of Quetta have been waiting for long to watch high-profile cricket in their backyard and I am pleased that we will now bring HBL PSL matches to their doors. In this relation, I have already spoken with influential officials in the Balochistan province, who have assured me of their complete support from event delivery perspectives.”
The Committee also discussed Peshawar as a potential venue to stage HBL PSL and international matches and agreed that subject to there being no restrictions imposed by the provincial and federal governments and the stadia boasting international standard facilities for cricket, broadcast, spectators and media, matches will be held in the Khyber Pakhtunkhwa capital.
The Management Committee also held preliminary discussions on The Women’s League with further discussions to take place in due course. The Management Committee discussed the domestic cricket structure under the PCB Constitution 2014 and, in the best interest of the players and event, decided to let the Pakistan Cup complete on 3 January. The Pakistan Cricket Board (PCB) Management Committee has announced an exciting development for the eighth edition of the Habib Bank Limited (HBL) Pakistan Super League (PSL) slated for February 2023.
The PCB Management Committee has decided to add Quetta as a venue for the tournament for the very first time, bringing the number of stadiums used in the tournament to five. In a meeting held on Sunday, the Management Committee noted this will bring the best cricket action closer to a greater number of cricket fans in the country.
The five venues where the tournament will be held are currently the National Stadium in Karachi, Rawalpindi Cricket Stadium, Lahore’s Gaddafi Stadium, Multan Cricket Stadium, and the newly added Bugti Stadium in Quetta. The inclusion of Quetta provides great news for the loyal cricket fans in Balochistan who can now attend their favourite teams in action in their home towns and witness the fast-paced T20 cricket.
The Balochistan cricket board is known to produce many talented cricketers such as the former T20I captain of Pakistan, Sarfraz Ahmed, and former right-arm fast bowling sensation Wehneshwar Shah. The talented youth of Balochistan started producing results and excelling in the game after the province started producing domestic cricket and inter-district tournaments.
The addition of a new venue will most certainly increase the enthusiasm within fans from the province, who have already had a warm welcome since the first edition of the PSL in 2016.
The eighth edition of the HBL PSL is set to be a major hit with the addition of Quetta, further adding to the thriving popularity of T20 cricket in the nation.