The fifth season of the Pakistan Super League is set to be played entirely in the country after the franchise owners agreed to such a plan of the cricket board.
Javed Afridi, who owns the Peshawar Zalmi franchise, said the owners of the six teams have agreed during a meeting on Monday that the PSL five should be held entirely in Pakistan — in Karachi, Lahore, Multan and Rawalpindi.
The owners of all the six franchises had a meeting with Pakistan Cricket Board Chairman Ehsan Mani and Managing Director Wasim Khan during the PSL Governing Council in Lahore on Monday.
“Yes, all the franchises have shown their willingness to back the PCB on having the entire PSL in Pakistan because it would also mean franchises being able to earn more and losses being reduced,” Afridi said.
The PSL-5 is likely to be played in February-March next year. He said franchises lost money because more than half of the matches of the first four editions of the PSL were held in the UAE.
“Last edition earnings from one match in Karachi was around 170 million rupees and if the entire PSL is held in Pakistan, there is no doubt it will improve revenues of the PCB and for franchises,” Afridi said on the GSports show on GNews channel.
He said some compromises could be made if not all the foreign players agreed to come and play the entire PSL in Pakistan. He said the meeting also discussed appointing independent analysts and having security briefings to convince all the overseas players that they can play the entire PSL in Pakistan without any concerns.
PCB has held eight matches of the PSL in Lahore and Karachi, including the 2017 final, and with a few exceptions, most of the foreign players came to Pakistan for the matches.
The six franchises also asked the Pakistan Cricket Board to allow them to pay their local players in Pakistani currency instead of US dollars in order to reduce their expenses and losses.
“The franchise owners made a suggestion at the meeting that since the US dollar rate compared to the Pakistani currency had gone up drastically they should be allowed to pay their local players in local currency instead of dollars,” a source told PTI.
He said some of the owners noted that the US dollar had now gone up to around 160 rupees from around 142 when the previous PSL edition was held earlier this year.
According to the source, some owners noted that the present financial model of the PSL was not practical for the franchises who were suffering 50 percent losses.
He said the owners had also suggested reducing the fees paid to the players in the PSL to allow them to reduce their losses.