Disasters don’t just happen, instead, they are triggered by the chain of critical events.In 2009 the Srilankan Cricket team was attacked near Gaddafi Stadium Lahore. This was one of the most horrible events in the history of entire Pakistani Nation.It was the morning of 3rd March 2009 when the convoy carrying the Srilankan squad and match officials was attacked by several terrorist gun men. The attack triggered for almost 15 minutes of gun battle with the policemen guarding the vehicle and caused the sad death of 6 policemen and a driver. Seven players, an umpire and a coach were hurt in the coordinated attack.
Although none of the players lost their life in the incident yet the incident proved to be catastrophic for the Cricket in Pakistan. After the incident, the Srilankan Team was sent back to their home and since then the land of Pakistan has been starved from the manful International cricket.The International Teams refused to come to Pakistan due to security reasons.Thanks to the administration of the United Arab Emirates for supporting Pakistan in such a difficult time and allowing the National Team to base their home matches on their land.
During this era, Zimbabwe was the only test playing nation who accepted the call from PCB to visit and play a limited overs series in Pakistan.But the bigger cricket giants like Australia, India, England and others refused to play in Pakistan. Under these dark circumstances, PSL was launched by PCB as the main source of getting the most needed revenue. It is expected that the forecasting profits from PSL will prove to be really helpful to overcome the major financial losses faced by PCB. In short, PSL was expected to give a really nice revenue stream to financially ratling PCB.
While the financial aspect had its importance, the other side of the picture is worth discussing. The League was expected to bring the International cricket back to Pakistan.There were serious efforts put forward by the security agencies of the country to build a peaceful atmosphere in the country. These efforts were bringing some meaning results and the frequency of suicide bombings went down almost to the level of zero. Although the overall situation of the country was not good enough to conduct the entire PSL in Pakistan, yet many were expecting and in fact pressurising the PCB management to at least try conducting the PSL final in the country.
Sensing the pulse of the nation, the PCB officials started to convince the international players to play the final of the league in Lahore Pakistan. It was during the drafting ceremony for the second session of PSL when the chairman of PCB gave the exciting news to the nation that the international players have given the green signal for playing the PSL final in Pakistan and hence he announced that the PSL final will be held at Gaddafi Stadium Lahore.
The excitement continued to grow until the evening of 13 Feb when the breaking news came that says that the Lahore explosion leaves many dead near Punjab Assembly. Lahore yet again was made the battlefield by the enemies of Pakistan. The blast caused the death of almost 15 innocent persons and injured more than 80. The sad news of the attack was followed by the statement of PCB chairman saying that the international players had refused to play the PSL final in Lahore.The news of that day was really shocking for all the patriotic ones.
PSL final will be held in Lahore if the fans want, says Sethi
Pakistan Super League (PSL) Chairman Najam Sethi promised cricket fans in Pakistan that the PSL final will be held in the city of Lahore, even in the absence of foreign players, if the fans do not want the venue to change after bombing.
“The foreign players have refused to play the final in Lahore after blast, but if the citizens of Pakistan want the final of PSL to be held in Lahore despite foreign players not participating in the final, then the final will be held in Lahore,” said Sethi in his statement.
Though there had been a lot of talk about how this tragedy will affect the PSL in general and whether the PSL final will be held in Lahore or not. The PCB chairman says that if the final is to be held in Lahore then the international players might not play the final and if the final will be held in UAE then, of course, we will able to see the international faces on the ground. Only time will tell that what really will happen. We hope that in either case, the game of cricket will prevail in the land that has produced quality cricketers.