- “The HBL PSL would not have been this successful without the love and support of its fans. We had an overall turnout of around 85 per cent on an average, which is fantastic.”
- “HBL PSL 8 also contributed in keeping country’s economic wheel moving as it created job opportunities and helped tourism, hotel industry, airlines and road traveling business grow”
- “We produced pitches that supported batting and bowling, and provided perfect setting for evenly and keenly contested matches”
- Unedited video clip of the press conference is available on the PCB YouTube Channel
Lahore, 18 March 2023: Mr Najam Sethi, Chair of the Pakistan Cricket Board Management Committee has expressed his gratitude towards all the stakeholders for turning HBL Pakistan Super League 8 into a massive successive.
The event had commenced in Multan with a glittering ceremony on 13 February. Over 34 days, Multan staged five matches, Karachi and Lahore nine matches each and Rawalpindi 11 matches. On 8, 10 and 11 March, the PCB, alongside the HBL PSL 8 matches, also organised three Women’s League exhibition matches in Rawalpindi, which were also participated by 10 foreign players from seven countries.
The final of the 34-match tournament will be played on Saturday, 18 March, at the Gaddafi Stadium, Lahore.
Addressing a news conference ahead of Lahore Qalandars-Multan Sultans final, Mr Sethi said: “I want to thank all the stakeholders, including federal, provincial governments and law enforcement institutions for their unwavering support and making the HBL PSL 8 a success. The way all the arms of the state worked together and provided their help and support to the PCB underscores how this tournament is now considered as a national asset.
“I also want to thank the foreign players for their participation in the tournament. The foreign players want to come and play in the league as it provides them quality cricket and has helped in their development. Many foreign cricketers who have played here have gone on to graduate to the top-level, because of which the HBL PSL has emerged into as a global brand.
“All the women players who were here for the women exhibition matches in Rawalpindi have expressed their desire to come back and play in Pakistan, which is a great advert for our country.
“I also want to congratulate my team for the smooth delivery of the event. It is no mean task to flawlessly deliver logistical and operational support to the tournament of such a magnitude at four venues. We were managing two production teams and many a time the turnaround time was very tight, but their undying spirit and resolve made sure that we never faced any obstacles.
“Despite all the logistical challenges, we were able to conduct a high-class opening ceremony in Multan. Never before has an opening ceremony being delivered of such great quality. When I took over the affairs, no preparation had been made for the opening ceremony. I personally looked into the affairs and made sure that we continue to build the brand of the HBL PSL through sheer hard work and dedication.
“It took us two months from planning till execution to deliver the HBL PSL, and I have no qualms in claiming that we can deliver the HBL PSL in any part of the world, because of the knowledge and expertise we possess.
“The HBL PSL would not have been this successful without the love and support that it has received from the fans. We had turnout of 80 per cent on average and at times, it went to 95 per cent. It is their support that has turned the HBL PSL into a global brand. The new levels of interest and following has seen record ticket sales, record crowd turnout and record digital and TV ratings, which has not happened before.
“The tournament was only made successful because of the great quality of cricket.
“We produced pitches that supported batting and bowling and provided perfect setting for evenly contested matches. Never before we saw as many as seven centuries being scored in an edition. Multan Sultans posted 262, the highest HBL PSL score, and the we also saw the record for the highest match aggregate in the world getting set when Peshawar Zalmi and Multan Sultans amassed 515 runs in Rawalpindi.
“There were three five-fers, joint most with HBL PSL 1, a hat-trick and top-10 bowlers included seven fast bowlers (all locals) and three spinners (all local).
“These are just phenomenal numbers.
“HBL PSL 8 also contributed in keeping country’s economic wheel moving as it created job opportunities and helped tourism, hotel industry, airlines and road traveling business grow. We have paid PKR70crore in taxes to the federal government, PKR50crore in sales taxes and another PKR50crore in provincial taxes and also helped businesses grow.
“Moving on, we will work on uplifting our stadia in Lahore, Karachi, Multan, Rawalpindi, Quetta and Peshawar as I feel we need to enhance the facilities to make them at par with the world. We are also in talks with the relevant authorities in Karachi and government in Lahore to make five-star hotels with the stadiums so the people don’t have to face disturbances when the matches are held.”