CM, PCB chief agree to hunt talent

Monitoring Desk

KARACHI: Sindh Chief Minister Syed Murad Ali Shah and Chairman Pakistan Cricket Board (PCB) Ehsan Mani, who along with his delegation called on him here at the CM House, discussed final arrangements made for Pakistan Super League (PSL) matches to be played from March 9 to 17 in the city.

“There will be foolproof security arrangements for the players and matches in the city and I am sure next time you will bring all PSL matches to Karachi,” Murad Ali Shah said and added he had constituted a committee with Local Government Minister Saeed Ghani as chairman, Home Secretary Kazi Kabir and Commissioner Karachi Iftikhar Shahlwani as its members.

The Sindh chief minister said that the committee has worked day and night to make all the arrangements – carpeting of the roads, improvement of drainage system, provision of water, security plan, arrangements at the stadium and finalizing routes from airport to hotels and hotels to stadium.

“Your [PCB] team also worked with the committee and now everything is upto the mark,” he said. The meeting was attended by Local Government minister Saeed Ghani, Advisor to CM Murtaza Wahab, Home Secretary Kazi Kabir and Commissioner Karachi Iftikhar Shahlwani while the officials with the PCB chairman were Senior General Manager National Stadium Arshad Khan and Director International Cricket Operation Zakir Khan.

Chairman PCB Ehsan Mani said, had the chief minister not taken his personal interest, the PSL would not have returned to Karachi even last year. “This is your unflinching support, cooperation and efforts which developed our confidence in the Sindh government and we brought eight matches instead of five to the city,” he told the chief minister.

The chief minister said that last year when PSL matches were held here he had made his personal efforts to make it possible but after that event PCB did not return to him for evolving future strategy to return international cricket and PSL matches, he deplored and added he wanted to hold at least one match at the Niaz Stadium, Hyderabad, this year.

The chairman PCB vowed to hold a PSL match in Hyderabad next year. “We will work together and plan the future matches just let this event over,” he said.

Murad Ali Shah said that after PSL, he and chairman PCB would visit Niaz Stadium along with concerned experts so that all the requirements for international matches in the stadium could be revamped. The chief minister and the PCB chief agreed to work together for bringing international cricket matches to Karachi. They also agreed that the PCB would send a special talent hunting teams to rural areas of the province to select under 13 and 16 players to induct them in PSL and international matches.

The chief minister was told that six PSL teams would play matches in the city and the tickets for all the matches have been sold out. It was also pointed out that over 50 international players, coaches and commentators are participating in the PSL in the city. “This is a mega event and we all will make it a memorable event,” Murad Shah concluded.