Pakistan’s former pacer Shoaib Akhtar said the Pakistan Super League (PSL) is facing an economic crisis and some owners are looking to sell their franchises. Akhtar having appeared on a TV show, he also said that he had not seen the PSL taking place for the next 16 to 18 months. “I know some people wouldn’t want to hear this but some owners are trying to sell their franchisees. I’d love to provide financial and non-monetary assistance to keep the PSL alive and thriving, “he said.
Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, the Pakistan Cricket Board had to suspend the fifth edition of the PSL in March this year with the final stage of the event remaining. The board was also forced to arrange some matches before empty stadiums in Karachi and Lahore due to the Covid-19 after the league was held in Pakistan for the first time since its start in 2016.
Akhtar mentioned on the TV show, “I don’t think we can organize the PSL before 16 to 18 months if we do the math. The World Cup is also likely to take 8 months, as it takes time to resolve the Covid-19 pandemic.”
The former fast bowler pointed out, “The thing is how can the PSL be held in four months if there is no proper cricket until say September? In this condition, I don’t think the board should ask the franchisees for money. As far as I know several franchises ready to sell their teams. They have offered.’
He said that he would not let the PSL die and he will provide financial and other support to save the T20 league.
He emphasized during the interview, “I’m going to make sure that the PSL thrives and stays alive and it gets top brands to make progress.”
He also disagreed with advice that the Indian cricket board (BCCI) worked behind the scenes to delay the World T20 Cup in Australia and then keep the Indian Premier League in its October-November window.
Akhtar said the Australian government won’t make decisions based on what the BCCI wants, “I don’t think there is anything the ICC, Cricket Australia or BCCI can do about it. The decision will come from the Government of Australia. The Australian Government’s policies will decide when the World T20 is held. He further explained his view, “And I know their people’s safety is a priority for the Australian government without paying heed to other forces.”