Shoaib Akhtar
Shoaib Akhtar Image Credit: Twitter

Shoaib Akhtar, the former Pakistan pacer, says being forced to play cricket in front of empty stands will be difficult to sell due to the lack of atmosphere.

While some sports such as football and motorsports have resumed behind closed doors to contain the spread of coronavirus, cricket is still at a standstill, although the game’s organisers are planning to begin a return to action soon — also without fans.

“Playing cricket in the empty stadiums may be viable and durable for cricket boards. But I do not think we can market this. Playing cricket in an empty stadium is like marriage without a bride. We need crowds to play games. I hope the corona situation will be normalised within a year,” Akhtar told a Helo Live session.

India skipper Virat Kohli had also said that it would be difficult to recreate the magic and the excitement of playing in a packed stadium while playing behind closed doors.