Karachi: Pakistan Cricket Board chairman Ehsan Mani on Wednesday congratulated all participants, officials, local administration, and security agencies on the successful completion of the Pakistan Super League (PSL) 2020.
Karachi Kings won their first PSL title on Tuesday after defeating Lahore Qalandars in the finals of the tournament by five wickets. Babar Azam was named as Player of the Tournament.
The PSL playoffs were played behind closed doors at the National Stadium in Karachi. Earlier, the event was suspended on March 17 due to the COVID-19 pandemic.
"I had promised following the Pakistan Super League 2019 that the 2020 edition will be held in Pakistan from start to finish. I reiterated this when the event was suspended prior to the playoff stage, and despite several challenges, uncertainties and doubts, I am delighted that the PCB has fulfilled another commitment and promise to the loyal and passionate Pakistan cricket fans and supporters," said PCB chairman Mani in an official release.
"But at the same time, I am sad that Karachi Kings had to make history before an empty National Stadium. This great game is all about fans and their absence was badly missed by all of us, including the players and match officials. We can only visualise the celebrations and a festive occasion this final would have created, only if the situation was normal," he added.
Mani also said that PCB will continue to monitor the COVID-19 situation and he expressed hope of seeing fans back into stadiums for the 2021 PSL.
"With the COVID-19 situation being an evolving one, the PCB will continue to monitor it and work with the authorities to explore ways of allowing fans to attend matches when international cricket and Pakistan Super League matches are held in 2021," said Mani.
"The visiting players were once again appreciative of the way they were looked after and I am sure following these playoff matches, we have added more ambassadors of Pakistan cricket. Not many will know, understand and recognise the efforts and hard work of the PCB staff, who have worked incredibly hard to demonstrate to the world that Pakistan can organise and deliver high-quality cricket successfully despite the challenging and difficult COVID situation," he added.
Before the PSL 2020 playoffs, Pakistan had hosted Zimbabwe for three ODIs and three T20Is. Mani said that he is looking forward to host South Africa in 2021.
"The PCB has already delivered more than 55 per cent of a full domestic season, while the home international series against Zimbabwe was smooth and flawless. I remain confident that the PCB will succeed in completing the 2020-21 domestic season. We look forward to hosting South Africa under the Future Tours Programme agreement in January/February 2021 and leading international cricketers will also return to feature in the HBL Pakistan Super League 2021, which will be played at the back of the home series against South Africa," said Mani.