PCB reschedules PSL 2020, final to be played on March 18

PCB reduces PSL 2020 by four days. There will now be 33 matches as opposed to 34

Web Desk
Photo: File

KARACHI: The Pakistan Cricket Board (PCB) on Friday rescheduled the remaining matches of the Pakistan Super League (PSL) 2020. The final of the league has been moved up to March 18, 2020 from March 22, 2020. 

The playoffs have been replaced with the semi-finals on 17 March and the final on 18 March.

The decision means the PSL 2020 has been reduced by four days and there will now be 33 matches as opposed to 34.

According to the revised schedule, the 17 March semi-finals will be double-headers and will be held at the Gaddafi Stadium with the table-toppers going head to head with the fourth-placed side at 2pm. This match will be followed by the second semi-final, which will begin at 7pm, between the second and third-placed sides.

The final will be played on 18 March and will start at 7:00pm. All these changes have been made with the consultation of the team owners.

The PCB said it was in close contact with the Punjab Government and, as is always the case, will receive guidance from them in regard to allowing spectators to watch the last four matches at the Gaddafi Stadium. An announcement on this will be made in due course.

A number of foreign players in Pakistan for the fifth edition of the Pakistan Super League are set to fly back to their home countries as fears over the coronavirus pandemic spread across the globe. 

According to the PCB,  Peshawar Zalmi's Tom Banton, Liam Livingstone, Lewis Gregory, Liam Dawson and Carlos Brathwaite, as well as Multan Sultans' James Vince and Rilee Rossouw, as well as Karachi Kings' Alex Hales, and Jason Roy and Tymal Mills from Quetta Gladiators, are among the players to confirm their departures. 

Revised schedule:

13 March – Peshawar Zalmi v Multan Sultans, National Stadium (8pm-11.15pm). Rashid Riaz and Michael Gough (on-field), Ahsan Raza (third umpire), Faisal Khan Afridi (fourth umpire), Roshan Mahanama (match referee)

14 March – Karachi Kings v Islamabad United, National Stadium (7pm-5.15pm). Ahsan Raza and Michael Gough (on-field), Rashid Riaz (third umpire), Faisal Khan Afridi (fourth umpire), Roshan Mahanama (match referee)

15 March – Multan Sultans v Lahore Qalandars, Gaddafi Stadium (2pm-5.15pm). Shozab Raza and Aleem Dar (on-field), Asif Yaqoob (third umpire), Nasir Hussain (fourth umpire), Mohammad Anees (match referee); Quetta Gladiators v Karachi Kings, National Stadium (7pm-10.15pm). Rashid Riaz and Michael Gough (on-field), Ahsan Raza (third umpire), Faisal Khan Afridi (fourth umpire), Roshan Mahanama (match referee)

17 March – 1st semi-final (1 v 4) (2pm-5.15pm); 2nd semi-final (2 v 3) (7pm-10.15pm) (both matches at Gaddafi Stadium)

18 March – Final, Gaddafi Stadium (7pm-10.15pm)

Any player can withdraw from PSL: PCB

Earlier on Friday, the Pakistan Cricket Board had said that any international player that wishes to withdraw from the ongoing Pakistan Super League may do so at their own will.

“All players have the right to leave the league,” said the PCB. It added that players from England had put forward a withdrawal request. The franchise teams have also limited their activities in the ongoing PSL

The PCB on Friday afternoon announced that the HBL Pakistan Super League 2020 will proceed as planned, including tonight’s Multan Sultans versus Peshawar Zalmi match, which will commence at the National Stadium at 8pm.

However, the board said that the match will be played behind closed doors and only event accredited personnel will be allowed to enter the venue. "All players and players support personnel have been given the option to withdraw from the HBL PSL 2020 should they wish to do so," the PCB added. 

'Evolving and unprecedented situation'

“This remains an evolving and unprecedented situation with a number of moving parts that require constant and regular monitoring," PCB Chief Executive Wasim Khan said in a statement following the annoucnement. 

“Today, the PCB and the team owners, as part of their duty of care, have decided to give all the players the option to decide if they wish to return home. Ensuring that the players feel comfortable remains paramount to the PCB," he said.

“As of now, it is important to emphasise and clarify that the main concern of many of the 10 players and a coach, who have chosen to return home, revolves around avoiding a potential situation where they might become stranded either due to flight cancellations or border closures in their own countries," he added.

“The PCB will facilitate their safe return and will ensure the same for all of the players and support staff personnel who decide to withdraw from HBL PSL 2020," he noted.