Najam Sethi was recently in Karachi, where he met the Chief Minister Sindh, among others with a view of holding Pakistan Super League final in Karachi. This was an attempt to iron out issues with regards to security arrangements and inspect the renovation work taking place at the National Stadium.
But as a cricket fan and Karachite, I felt that this tour did very little at reassuring us that International cricket is about to return to Karachi and it won’t just remain limited to Qaddafi stadium. Lahore.
I would like to start with appreciation largely of what Mr Sethi has achieved so far during his time at the PCB. This opinion is as apolitical as it can be. However, if I have a bone to pick with the award winning journalist is how he deals with Karachi. It was absurd extremely absurd of him to make Fawad Alam’s non-inclusion a cause of the ‘Karachi’s journalist.’
Now the case of PSL final in Karachi. Mr Sethi is as committed to a Karachi final as Penny was to Lenard from season 1 to 8. His responses range from InshAllah to double InshAllah. For someone giving a timeline of work, he sure has to be a little certain than ‘We hope to finish by the 15th of February, but even if we finish by 15th of March we can host the final…’
Which one is it? Why play the hold-your-breath-game till the last day? Why didn’t the work start a year ago? I have asked this question before too but having known the history of Pakistan cricket, the answer probably is obvious. The revealing comment was made when a journalist asked about a backup plan to which the PCB chairman responded that in case of delay in the work or security issues, the final will be played in Lahore. Only time will tell if the Karachi final will materialize or not. However, all the signs shows that plan B was always actually plan A. Rest of it is about playing to the gallery.
I hope time proves me wrong, I’d be glad.