Pakistan news August 26, 2014

Pakistan Super League shelved again

The Pakistan Super League (PSL), the PCB's proposed franchise-based Twenty20 tournament, will not kick off this year. This is the second time in the last 18 months the tournament has been shelved. Earlier it was over logistic problems, this time it is mainly due to the "paucity of lead time" in the face of issues with the bidding process.

The PCB was planning to hold the PSL this winter, between December 2014 and January 2015, with the UAE as a potential venue for the five-team T20 competition. The board invited parties to acquire the PSL rights, but quality of the bids meant the PCB has decided to put it on hold.

There were six companies that showed interest in bidding but only two - Haier and Aman Foundation - showed the capability to provide a bank guarantee of US$3 million before taking part in the bid process. The board was due to open bids earlier this month but decided to delay the process by 10 days, before postponing it indefinitely.

"The PCB chairman [Shaharyar Khan] explained to the representatives of both the bidders as to why it had become extremely difficult to organise the inaugural PSL edition this year," the PCB said in a press release. "Chief among the reasons behind taking this decision was the paucity of lead time.

"The PCB Chairman thanked both the bidders on understanding the board's predicament, while communicating to them cancellation of the bidding process, simultaneously handing back the financial proposals, bid security and bid participation fee to the bidders unopened."

"The PCB is committed to holding the PSL, and I hope that both Haier and Aman Foundation shall take part in the bidding when the tendering process is reinitiated shortly," Shaharyar Khan said in the statement. "The board meanwhile is finalising a window in the future tours programme, which affords it sufficient lead time to launch PSL well and make the event a success."

During Zaka Ashraf regime, the PSL business model - unveiled in January - was expected to fetch the PCB "in excess of $100 million". The PCB had also announced the base prices of players for a proposed auction, though it didn't reveal the pool of players who had signed up for the tournament.

The launching the PSL has not been a straightforward business for the PCB so far, as no international cricket has been played in Pakistan since the terrorist attack on the Sri Lanka team bus in Lahore in 2009.

Umar Farooq is ESPNcricinfo's Pakistan correspondent. @kalson

Comments have now been closed for this article

  • Zia on August 27, 2014, 11:01 GMT

    If after all PCB decides sometime to organize PSL,there should be 8-10 teams involved...having just 5 teams kills the anticipation of competition in league

  • Malik on August 27, 2014, 4:36 GMT

    Agreed with the comments by anonymous regarding Pak-India series to be held in England. Probably this is the only way that India can win a test series in England and on the other hand, Pakistan can carry an advantage of India's past records against England in England and play with 4 seamers in a team to scare the Indians. What an interesting test series that would be if taken place !

  • Emran on August 27, 2014, 4:29 GMT

    T20 franchise cricket has destroyed the real cricket. Every country has its own model. It has made players and boards rich which is good if it doesnt eat up the real cricket which obviously and unfortunately is not that big of a business proposition. We are getting an overdose of T20. The players are exhausted playing different leagues. The players have modified their games to suit T20 but many spectators in this day and era are not even aware what real cricket was. Does any one remember the great windies of the 80s. The Ashes competitions when players like Lillee and Thompson were leading the Aussie attack or the great Pak india series in the 70s and 80s.I hope someone realises this in ICC and does something to bring back the real game.

  • Dummy4 on August 26, 2014, 18:32 GMT

    Bring 1 player each for regional T20 teams from other playing nations, which will attract your domestic tournament in this year and make PSL happen in next year..

  • Dummy4 on August 26, 2014, 18:19 GMT

    Instead of this PCB should focus on acquiring a full series against India. 3 Test Matches, 5 ODIs and 3 T20Is in England. Both countries have the largest diaspora there. The revenue will be humongous which can be shared by all three boards. I hope this gets published and someone from either BCCI or PCB or both reads this.

  • I on August 26, 2014, 17:40 GMT

    Was this even still alive? We don't need yet another franchise-based T20 model. I'm glad this idea is dying, but it's not going quickly enough.

    If you're doing the T20 thing, so it differently. Invite China, Afghanistan, UAE to send teams. Get teams with a sense of localness, not just arbitrary franchises. Bring in a few international players per team. Grow the game by doing something different, not another "me too" T20 junkyard

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