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Reports: Pakistan Super League T20 to be held in February 2016

PSL may finally be held in Qatar after failed negotiations with Emirates Cricket Board. PSL schedule was clashing with the newly launched MCL which had approached ECB first.

Pakistan cricket team during a practice session

The much debated and twice postponed Pakistan Super T20 league may finally see the light of the day, it appears. According to the PCB Chairman, Shaharyar Khan, the series will be held in February regardless of the venue, as per oneindia.com. PCB had initially planned to hold the league in Pakistan, but that got scrapped after the 2009 terrorist attack on the Sri Lankan team in Pakistan. So, in order to attract the foreign players PCB started looking for a neutral venue.

“We would have liked to launch it in Pakistan but even having it at an offshore venue will benefit the Board in both cricketing and financial aspects" Khan added. "At the off-shore venues, however, the PCB expects a good response from the cricketers as well as the broadcasters. Therefore we have decided to go ahead with the PSL in either UAE or Qatar," he said while addressing reporters at a press conference held on Monday. 

It has been reported that PCB had first approached the Emirates Cricket Board for permission to use their three stadiums for the league, but things didn’t work out as ECB had already given the nod to the newly launched  Masters Champions League (MCL) for the February slot. This league boasts stalwarts like Brian Lara, Wasim Akram and Adam Gilchrist as their star players. It was launched in Dubai earlier this year.

It appears that PCB has now sent a formal proposal to the Qatar Olympic Committee to let them use their only cricket stadium for the league. 

According to a highly placed source in PCB, there shall be three pay scales for the players in the tournament; 100000, 60000 and 40000 dollars. “The A category will include the very top players like Shahid Afridi and those who command icon status but payments will be made on basis of number of matches played by a player in the league”, as quoted by PTI.

The source has stressed on the fact that the main aim of this league was to improve the financial condition of the domestic cricket players in Pakistan. This will help the Pakistan cricket in the longer run as first-class players of Pakistan will have a better platform to showcase their skills. IPL in India has actually enriched the talent pool in the country, apart from doling out huge pay packets. PCB would be keen to replicate the same in PSL too.

Negotiations with the agents of some top overseas players and other stakeholders have started and the only thing that remains to be seen is the availability of the star foreign players during the league, according to the source, as reported by PTI.

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