Pakistan Cricket Board confirm Super League for UAE in February 2016

After a dragged out process that nearly saw Pakistan book Doha for its franchise-based Twenty20 tournament, the board announced on Thursday it would indeed be held in the Emirates.

A view of Dubai Cricket Stadium, with the Pakistan team training there in November 2009. Stephen Lock / The National
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The Pakistan Cricket Borad have confirmed the Pakistan Super League will be played in the UAE in February of next year, after an at-times acrimonious scheduling conflict nearly led it to Qatar.

As Osman Samiuddin reported for The National last week, after "a long and tortuous road to the first Pakistan Super League ... it is increasingly likely that the PSL will be played in the UAE in February 2016". On Thursday, issuing a release, the board confirmed just that.

“The PSL has already floated tenders for broadcasters and producers,” said league chairman Najam Sethi in the release. “This will be followed by a tendering process for sponsorships in the second week of October. Franchise owners will be inducted between mid to end November after which the foreign and local players will be drafted and teams constituted.”

The announcement specified a total of 24 matches would be played in a 21-day period from February 4-24 of next year, in Dubai and Sharjah.

Abu Dhabi was not mentioned as a venue in the release. Explained a PCB official: “Two venues are sufficient for PSL. Abu Dhabi was far away and shifting broadcast equipment would have been a challenge.”

The league has five confirmed teams – Quetta, Karachi, Peshawar, Lahore and Islamabad. Some of the players pledged to participate include Kevin Pietersen, Chris Gayle and Lasith Malinga.

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