KARACHI: The Sindh government has decided that the next Pakistan Super League (PSL) 2020 matches will be held in front of empty stadium in Karachi amid fear of spread of coronavirus pandemic.
The decision will be implemented from Friday (today).
Spokesperson Sindh Government Senator Murtaza Wahab said the provincial cabinet had decided that the remaining matches of the PSL 2020 in Karachi would take place without any crowd. “This decision has been made after consultation with all stakeholders including the Pakistan Cricket Board (PCB),” he said.
The PCB in a press release has confirmed that PSL 2020 matches would be held in front of empty National Stadium.
For the Thursday, March 12, fixture, the PCB and the Sindh government had strongly advised the spectators to continue to take all necessary precautionary measures.
The precautionary decision has been made to better protect the health and safety of the spectators, players, officials and media.
The decision will not impact accredited commercial partners, media and other service providers, who will be allowed to enter the National Stadium. In addition, immediate families of the competing players and player support personnel as well as franchise owners will be allowed to attend the matches.
In the meantime, the PCB has advised all players to avoid shaking hands and have also urged the fans not to approach the players for autographs, photographs and selfies.
In addition to this, the PCB has decided the sides will not be required to shake hands with each other or opposition in the lead up to and during the matches and use a fist bump / verbal greeting instead.
PCB Chief Executive Wasim Khan said: “Health and safety is paramount and takes precedence over cricket. The PCB takes the health and safety of its players, spectators, officials, media, service providers and security personnel very seriously.
“Following the advisory from the government of Sindh this evening, the PCB has taken this precautionary and preemptive measure which will result in matches taking place in front of empty stadium.
“We empathise with the Karachi fans who have been outstanding with their support in the earlier matches and during the hosting of eight PSL matches last year. Once we received the advisory from the government of Sindh, it was important for us to act quickly to ensure that the wellbeing of all concerned is better protected.
“The PCB has been regularly engaging with the teams and the players and have been updating them on matters. We have a duty of care to players and other stakeholders during this time; we would like to thank them for their continued trust and support.
“The initial March 10 decision to proceed with the Karachi leg of matches was taken following consultation with the Sindh government and we have taken on board their latest advisory. We stated at the outset that we will work closely and take the lead from the local governments.
“With regards to the remaining fixtures in Lahore, we are already in contact with the Punjab government and will take on board its advisory in relation to the Lahore matches.
“With regards to the refunding of tickets, this will be in line with the ticketing policy and will be refunded through TCS and www.yayvo.com. Details in this regard will be shared in due course.”
ICC Medical Advisory Committee’s advisory:
- Wash your hands often with soap and water for at least 20 seconds. Use an alcohol-based hand sanitizer that contains at least 60 per cent alcohol if soap and water are not available
- Avoid touching your eyes, nose, and mouth with unwashed hands
- Avoid close contact with sick people
- Avoid travel if you are sick
- If you have a cough or fever, then seek medical review
- Stay home when you are sick
- Cover your cough or sneeze with a tissue, then throw the tissue in the trash
- Clean and disinfect frequently touched objects and surfaces.