Cricket is, undoubtedly, the passion of every individual of Pakistan. They always seek a way to obtain mental calm and peace in positive things. Apart from the continuous war on terror in the country, the attitude of the international community towards the natives of this nation is also dismaying. After the diminution of hockey, cricket had been the single source of pleasure for most of the natives of Pakistan. But the war of terror and cold attitude of the world deprived Pakistanis from enjoying some quality entertainment on their own grounds. The Pakistan Cricket Board (PCB) had a full realization of this fact. After a long period of hibernation, PCB tried to lift up the nation’s spirit with the help of cricket.
How it happened?
The idea of organizing Pakistan Super League (PSL) emerged during the reign of Dr Nasim Ashraf in 2008, but at that time it couldn’t materialize due to technical issues. There were a lot of complications, even after that due to which the league has been postponed to this much duration. PSL had many objectives, but the primary consideration was to restore the image of Pakistan as a safe country for cricket by organizing this event successfully. Former PCB chairman Zaka Ashraf intended to do the same, but he had to leave his seat and Sheheryar Khan took his place on 14th August-2014. The chairman was changed, but enthusiasm doubled and the official logo of Pakistan Super League was launched on September 20, 2015. This was indeed the first step towards the restoration of cricket in the home grounds of Pakistan.
Some Challenges and how were they overcome?
The most challenging part of organizing this event was fascinating foreign players by the perks of the league, but unfortunately, most of the players had concerns about the location of the league. The first priority of PCB was to organize the event in Pakistan, but they had to change their decision and Pakistan Super League was finally decided to be arranged in UAE. It didn’t seem like a better decision at the moment but it was in the best interest of Pakistan. They just wanted to get as many impressive players as possible from all over the world . Once they would find the league economically and professionally beneficial for them, they would definitely come to Pakistan for the next edition also.
Well, the organization of any event is another big factor contributing to the success of that event. And by the benevolence of God, it has been organized in the best possible way. Five teams were being made for this edition. 4 teams from four provinces named Lahore Qalandars (Punjab), Peshawar Zalmi (KPK), Quetta Gladiators (Balochistan), Karachi Kings (Sindh) and 1 federal team named Islamabad United. “Karachi” was obtained at the highest rate of $26 million by ARY Media group. “Lahore” was sold for $24 million to Qatar Oil Company. UAE Capital Venture bought “Islamabad” for $15 million, Hier purchased “Peshawar” for $16 million and Omar Associate took “Quetta” for lowest $11 million. But most surprisingly, Quetta qualified for the finals, being the top ranked team throughout the event.
Local and International Response:
Response to the PSL from everywhere is just stupendous. People appreciated it and showed their interest in the league not only from Pakistan but also from the international community. Pakistanis have shown their immense enthusiasm in the event. It’s been like a mini World Cup for Pakistan. People also discussed about the league and shared detailed information about the event and its players on different forums. The craze of the youth was especially highlighted on social media.
Looking at all the aspects from a neutral perspective, an unbiased review is that PSL has achieved most of its objectives and goals. As far as cricket’s way back to Pakistan is concerned, that time is not very far anymore.