What was initially hoped to be a feud that would be over soon, has spiralled into a major war threat for both India and Pakistan with India going forward with its threats and Pakistan standing tough against the baseless Pulwama retaliation. LoC violations from both sides have made the matters worse with India stubborn in any peace-making affairs with Pakistan and with Pakistan forced to keep the Indians at bay. These incidents have left a greater effect on both countries than they realise. For Pakistan, it means the doubtfulness of PSL final stages to be played in the country in light of the recent political situation and the possibility of foreign players to reject the invitation to play in Pakistan given the volatile circumstances.
History states that it wouldn’t be a good idea to host these matches with a previous incident still haunting PCB and its quest to revive international cricket in Pakistan. That event was the unfortunate terrorist attack on the Sri-Lankan team near Gadaffi stadium that caused a huge uproar by ICC and thereafter were stripped off any opportunity to play on home soil by the cricketing council. However, with PCB working rigorously to bring back Pakistan’s favourite sport, there has been a glimmer of hope with a number of sides with the likes of Zimbabwe playing matches in Pakistan. This tremendous effort is now under threat as PSL nears the qualifying stages which were initially planned to be played in Pakistan, because of the Indian threat.
ach PSL franchise has a number of foreign players in their side and a majority of them have already agreed to visit Pakistan.However, the feud with India was not anticipated and it remains to be seen how many of the superstars agree to come to Pakistan despite that.
Nothing has been officially stated yet, but it seems to be in question whether foreign players would side with PCB and not let political pressure sway them from neglecting the beautiful game. Another option would be to hold the final matches, which were scheduled for Pakistan, in the UAE to ensure the safety of all cricketers and maximum participation from foreign players.
PSL 2019 MATCHES ON HOME SOIL UNDER THREAT GIVEN THE HEATED SITUATION BETWEEN THE BORDER COUNTRIES
Will PCB be willing to risk should the situation get worse or remain on the safe side to prevent any effect on the regained momentum and reputation of the board? How the situation pans out, only time will tell.