LAHORE: The Abu Dhabi Health Ministry has surprisingly raised an objection over the presence of Indian broadcasters to cover the HBL Pakistan Super League (PSL) matches despite the fact that the UAE government had issued visas to them along with South African nationals.
Sources said that the PCB, which is determined to start the league matches from June 7, sought special permission for the visas of Indians and South Africans because the UAE government had included both the countries in the red-list due to the rising number of Covid-19 cases in both countries.
It is amazing as to why the Abu Dhabi Health Ministry has now raised objections after the Indians and South Africans have already reached Abu Dhabi.
They all landed in Ras-Al’ Khaimah and later reached Abu Dhabi.
All the Indians are now passing through their quarantine period in Dubai. Sources said by Wednesday, the UAE government will take a final decision. If the UAE government allows their stay in Abu Dhabi, the matches may start from June 7. However, if it does not allow them, a grim situation may be confronted by the PCB.
Meanwhile, sources said that the PCB had also informed about the latest development to the PSL franchise owners at a meeting and about the expected new schedule of the matches. It is also learnt that the PCB had delayed the departure of the Pakistan team to England to June 25 instead of June 23.
The two-day delay in departure of the Pakistan team to England will surely help the PCB to reduce the number of double-headers in the league.
Meanwhile, Quetta Gladiators captain Sarfaraz Ahmed along with six others arrived in Abu Dhabi on Tuesday.
In another development, Multan Sultans included Blessing Muzarabani in place of Obed McCoy for the remaining 20 matches of the PSL.
Moreover, the players and officials of the franchises owners, who had reached Abu Dhabi from the first chartered flights on May 26 had completed their seven-day quarantine period and now Islamabad United and Lahore Qalandars will start training from Wednesday at Sheikh Zayed Cricket Stadium.
It is learnt that the matches of the PSL now will end on June 24 and the very next day, the Pakistan team will fly to England to play three One-day Internationals and as many T20 matches.
Published in Dawn, June 2nd, 2021