Friday, January 27

Sports: Cricket: Let Quetta also host PSL 4 matches: Nadeem Omar

Karachi: Quetta Gladiators owner Nadeem Omar has requested Pakistan Cricket Board (PCB) to also consider Quetta as one of the venues for Pakistan Super League (PSL) season 4 to be held next year.

The PCB and PSL Chairman Najam Sethi announced on Sunday that cities of Hyderabad, Rawalpindi and Peshawar could host matches of next PSL and that the stadiums would be upgraded in time as the board intends to host half of the league in Pakistan next year.

“Quetta should be considered as one of the venues of for PSL season 4 because people of Balochistan deserve to see the stars in action and it would create a massive positive impact on youth of Quetta and the whole province,” Nadeem said.

“The pitch, outfield and the whole facility of Bugti Stadium is outstanding and all it needs is uplifting of the venue like any other city. I’m sure that stakeholders of Quetta, which includes provincial government and Pakistan Army would be willing to help us out in this great initiative. Cricket is a binding force and has given the people of Balochistan a reason to smile thus having PSL matches in Quetta could leave a lasting impression.”

Nadeem further added that he has been in talks with all the major stakeholders of the region and have got assurances from them time and again that if PSL matches are hosted in the city, all the possible arrangements would be made.

Quetta Gladiators have been one of the best teams in the three seasons of PSL — ending up as runner-up twice and losing in the eliminator this year.

“Quetta Gladiators have become a huge brand and we’ve played an important role in success of PSL by putting Quetta on the global map. People now recognize Quetta as the force and this is why I believe that Quetta along with Peshawar deserves to host PSL matches,” Nadeem explained.

“Both people of Quetta and Peshawar have suffered a lot previously and now it’s their turn to get the happiness and to see all the stars play in their own stadiums. PSL in Pakistan can’t be completed without having Quetta and Peshawar as the host cities.”

Meanwhile, Nadeem also praised the role of PSL Chairman Najam Sethi in making PSL not only a sustainable brand but a successful brand.

“Sethi has done a wonderful job in making PSL what it is today. He had the courage of going ahead with the league when even people in PCB were against it. He brought it to Lahore and now Karachi which clearly shows that he delivers,” Nadeem said.

“He has now announced to host half of the league’s matches in Pakistan and we all support this decision. PSL is in safe hands and our support is with Sethi to make this league even bigger and better.”

Meanwhile, Omar also advised the PCB to only put in name of those foreign players in the PSL draft who are willing to play in Pakistan.

It should be recalled that Gladiators suffered recently when their star player Shane Watson and medium fast-bowler Ben Laughlin did not come to Pakistan after committing earlier.

“No matter how bigger a player is, if he is not willing to play in Pakistan, PCB shouldn’t include his name in the PSL draft for next season. We already have sacrificed a lot but foreign players need to stand up for PSL as well. Also, PCB should make stricter payment terms for the foreigners because they get 75-80% of the payment before PSL ends which makes them easier for them to turn their backs,” he stated.