PCB might postpone West Indies series in 2024 to avoid clash with PSL
The Pakistan Cricket Board (PCB) is weighing up options to postpone the home series against West Indies, slated for February and March in 2024, which is clashing with the next edition of the Pakistan Super League (PSL).
The PCB has also requested the Emirates Cricket Board to pull back their ILT20 league by 10 days to avoid overlapping.
Pakistan, according to ICC’s FTP, are scheduled to host West Indies for two Tests and three T20Is early next year, which has also been the window for conducting the PSL since 2016.
In the last PSL governing council meeting, it was affirmed that the PCB can “sacrifice” the home series. The board has opened up discussions with several stakeholders now in a bid to have a clear window for the next PSL.
If the PCB conducts the West Indies series after Ramadan, which is after the second week of April, they could face another challenge. With the IPL scheduled for April-May, several West Indies players might be unavailable for the bilateral series in Pakistan.
The PCB hasn’t said anything on when the series could be rescheduled, but there were discussions on the possibility of playing the home series during the month of Ramadan – March to April. However, playing Tests during that month will pose serious challenges with players observing fasting.
That said, the PCB had conducted a limited-overs series against New Zealand during the month of Ramadan this year, where the five-match T20I series was played at night and the five ODIs were conducted post-Ramadan.
With regards to the PSL, the six-team tournament now runs for 34 days. Due to Ramadan, its window is restricted from February 12 to March 10. With the ILT20 scheduled for January 13 to February 12 in 2024, the PCB has requested the UAE board for a ten-day concession.
It’s likely that the PCB might also release its players to sign a contract with the ILT20, a move floated as a bargain after the Pakistan board had turned down NOCs for a batch of Pakistan players for the league in the inaugural edition.
Meanwhile, the PCB is also planning to introduce two more franchises in the PSL, possibly extending the window by 10 days. The PSL and finance departments are currently forming a proposal on the financial distribution model, scheduling, and the commercial aspect to try and convince the existing six teams for the expansion, which is facing a few roadblocks, including its window. (ESPNcricinfo)