The National Command and Operation Centre (NCOC) has allowed 20% of the audience to participate in the HBL Pakistan Super League 2021, which will be played from February 20 to March 22 in Karachi and Lahore, the Pakistan Cricket Board (PCB) announced on Thursday.
The decision means that approximately 7,500 ticket spectators will be allowed to watch matches per match day at Karachi National Stadium, while approximately 5,500 will be able to attend matches at Lahore’s Gaddafi Stadium each match day.
“During the course of the event, the NCOC and the PCB will continue to work together and monitor the situation before a decision to increase crowd numbers for the three playoffs and the final is made,” the board stated in a statement.
Following a “detailed and comprehensive briefing” by the PCB officials, the NCOC reached a decision in which it assured the national authorities that the event organisers and the PCB would strictly follow the standard operating procedures of the Covid-19 government, including social distancing.
PCB Chairman Ehsan Mani, commenting on the development, said he was “thankful to the NCOC for trusting the PCB and allowing limited fans to watch the HBL Pakistan Super League 2021 live action.” This is an endorsement that during its marquee event being held in Pakistan for the second successive year, the PCB is an institution capable of planning and then successfully implementing Covid-19 SOPs.
Fans are the biggest asset of the PCB and we are delighted that a small number will matter, but some will be able to access the matches,” he added.”
“these are baby-steps and considering that most of the sport events are being played in empty stadium[s], this is a positive achievement and step in the right direction.”these are baby steps and considering that most of the sporting events are being played in empty stadiums, this is a positive achievement and step in the right direction.
I am optimistic that we will have a strong case for more fans in the 2021-22 season if we can maintain strict protocols during the HBL PSL 2021 matches, in which we will have to host high-profile international teams such as New Zealand, England and the West Indies, as well as quality domestic events, including the National T20 Cup, the Quaid-e-Azam Trophy and the Pakistan Cup,” he stressed.”