The Pakistan Cricket Board (PCB) confirmed on Wednesday that the government had given it the go ahead to allow spectators up to 25 per cent of the stadium's capacity in the HBL Pakistan Super League (PSL) 2022's Karachi matches, which will be played at the National Stadium from January 27 to February 7.

According to a statement issued by the PCB, the approval came from the National Command and Operation Centre (NCOC), which manages the the country's response to the coronavirus.

"The decision means around 8,000 spectators will be allowed inside the venue [on] each match day," the statement said, adding that entry would be subject to strict Covid-19 protocols.

The protocols include the requirement for individuals above the age of 12 years to be fully vaccinated, for spectators to show valid vaccination certificates at entry and to wear masks inside the stadium.

"Anyone violating the NCOC guidelines shall be liable to be evicted out of the stadium," the statement read.

It quoted PCB Chief Operating Officer and HBL PSL Tournament Director Salman Naseer as saying: “Spectators are the essence of any sport event and in this background, we now hope to set the stage with 25pc crowds to attend Karachi matches of the HBL PSL 2022."

“As a responsible organisation, we completely understand our obligations in relation to health and safety of the fans and will leave no stone unturned in strictly implementing the NCOC guidelines," he added.

Naseer further stated that officials and the management would also "require complete and unconditional support from the spectators so that they and others can continue to enjoy the matches in a safe and secure environment".

"This is something they can do by simply following the [NCOC] guidelines.”

According to the PCB statement, the NCOC will make a decision regarding the PSL's matches in Lahore, which will be played at Gaddafi Stadium between February 10 and February 27, closer to the time of these fixtures.

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