KARACHI: Sindh Chief Minister Syed Murad Ali Shah has directed the commissioner of Hyderabad Division and the chairman of the Pakistan Cricket Board to initiate necessary measures for repairing and maintenance of Niaz Stadium Hyderabad to develop it into a national-level stadium, where next year Pakistan Super League cricket events could be played.
The chief minister has issued these instructions to the commissioner and the PCB chairman through letters written to them separately on Monday urging them to start preparations right now so that the stadium could be repaired and renovated and stay of cricket teams and other guests as per required standard could be made possible.
Niaz Stadium, where the first Test match was played in 1973, has a capacity to accommodate 15,000 spectators.
It was built in early 1960s whereas so far only five Test matches have been played; two each against England and New Zealand, and one against India. The inaugural test match was played in March 1973 against England.
The last Test was played in Niaz Stadium between Pakistan and New Zealand in November 1984 and an international match was played in January 2008 between Pakistan and Zimbabwe after 10 years.
Speaking at a dinner hosted by Chief Secretary Syed Mumtaz Ali Shah in honour of officers for organising successful PSL matches in Karachi, the chief minister congratulated all stakeholders, including the Karachi administration, the local government, Sindh police, the Pakistan Army, the Rangers and intelligence agencies for making PSL successful. He stated that holding eight matches of PSL in Karachi was a challenge for the provincial government when other cities were not able to hold PSL matches due to logistical and other issues.
The Sindh government accepted the challenge and made all arrangements in a very short period of time. He vowed to hold PSL matches in Hyderabad next year as well.
Published in Dawn, March 27th, 2019