Pakistan cricket authorities have announced that upcoming domestic league matches in Karachi will be played in close doors due to the outbreak of coronavirus. The announcement came on Thursday. Although it is not yet announced that if any of the other games will be played like this including the league final which is set to be hosted in the eastern city of Lahore later this month.
“Following developments in the past 24 hours, the (Pakistan Cricket Board) has decided to take a proactive approach and put in place precautionary measures to better safeguard the health and safety of all those who will be involved in the upcoming matches,” said the governing body’s chief executive Wasim Khan.
Karachi was set to host five T20 games over the next six days at the national stadium, which can hold up to 30,000 people. However, many events across the world have been cancelled or postponed because of this.
“Still trying to understand why PSL hasn’t been cancelled during a GLOBAL PANDEMIC,” tweeted Pakistani novelist Fatima Bhutto.
“World’s best sports events are cancelled but in Pakistan flight operations are still going on, PSL is still not banned… Where we’re headed?” added Twitter user Asim Siddiq.
Read here: Smriti Mandhana Promises to Bounce Back Well
Notably, in a statement released by the Pakistan Cricket Board, officials encouraged fans to attend games but to wash their hands and refrain from hugging, shaking hands and spitting as well.
“We have ensured all kinds of safety measures at the PSL matches, so the people can enjoy cricket,” said Murtaza Wahab, the provincial government spokesman.
Meanwhile, as the fans entered Karachi’s national stadium Thursday evening, health officials who were seen wearing medical masks took their temperatures and monitored handwashing stations too. Pakistan has recorded 20 confirmed cases of the coronavirus so far which included more in Karachi. Not only PSL, but questions have also been put over the upcoming Indian Premier League as well.