Lahore to host PSL final, confirms PCB

Karachi [Pakistan], Jan.9 : The Pakistan Cricket Board (PCB) has confirmed that Lahore will host the final match of the second edition of the Pakistan Super League (PSL) on March 7 come what may.

The PCB also informed that they are now working on the plans to bring the international players to the country, while also drawing up contingency plans to replace overseas players who are unwilling to travel to Pakistan due to security concerns.

"In the recent governing board meeting it was decided that the final of PSL will be held in Lahore. PCB will try to convince players to travel to Pakistan but in the worst case scenario we will have a new draft for the players who are ready to tour Pakistan," ESPNcricinfo quoted a PCB spokesperson as saying.

Meanwhile, PCB's head of executive committee Najam Sethi said that in case no foreign player agrees to play in Pakistan then the final would be held in Lahore with local players to be roped in as replacements.

"Once the teams for the finals are decided and their icon or foreign players refuse to travel to Lahore, we will make a new draft with a pool from the existing 30-35 players of PSL.

We will probably need about five to ten players for Lahore, and those players who would be available from the discarded three teams can then get picked through this draft for the final," Sethi explained.

The PCB has taken several steps to bring these plans to the fore, with all the assurances from the Punjab government and security agencies.

The board has also bought four bulletproof buses so as to take additional security measures in order to convince players.

However, FICA, the international cricketers' association, recently issued a statement saying that there is a considerable security threat to players in Pakistan and, therefore, the international players should avoid touring the country.

On the other hand, the PCB had also sent a proposal to the West Indies Cricket Board (WICB) as a precondition in reply to another invitation received from West Indies asking Pakistan to play a T20 series in Florida in United States.

However, the two-match T20 series against the Caribbean side at home is subjected to an agreement from the West Indies Players' Association (WIPA) and security clearance.

Pakistan have not hosted any international cricket tournaments since the terror attack on the Sri Lankan team bus in Lahore in 2009,when six Pakistani policemen were killed and some of the visiting players were injured.

Source: ANI