12 Pakistan first-class cricketers stuck in Sri Lanka due to COVID-19 lockdown
Recently, a step by the Pakistan Cricket Board (PCB) has reduced opportunities for playing proper first-class cricket in the country.
Updated - Apr 27, 2020 4:38 pm
As many as twelve Pakistani first-class cricketers and three tennis players have got stuck in Sri Lanka due to the COVID-19 pandemic. As all the international flights have been suspended in and out of the island nation, these 15 sportspeople have been locked down in Sri Lanka.
With the entire world serving a lockdown, it has been a testing time for these sportspersons. All sporting have also been suspended across the globe, which has also stopped their source of income.
A prominent first-class cricketer from Pakistan, Azhar Attari is one of the 12 players who are stuck in Colombo. In a recent interaction, he has confirmed that all the players are waiting to fly back home but have no option at this moment.
According to the report by Scroll, the 12 players had arrived in Colombo in December to participate in some first-class and one-day games. Attari revealed that the step was taken by the players as it would make them eligible to sign work permits which allows them to play league cricket in the United Kingdom.
Players stuck in Sri Lanka ask for chartered flights
Recently, a step by the Pakistan Cricket Board (PCB) has reduced opportunities for playing proper first-class cricket in the country. PCB removed the role fo departmental teams in the domestic circuit. This has reduced the number of teams to just six, the provincial teams playing first-class cricket. Azhar Attari cited this as one of the major reasons why the 12 players were searching for opportunities elsewhere.
Abid Hasan, who was another first-class cricketer among that lot, has revealed that the players are in touch with Pakistan High Commission constantly. He said that they have been in contact as they have been asking them to provide chartered flights to fly back home. Hasan also said that the players have spent all the money they had after staying indoors for so long during the lockdown in Colombo.
“They relaxed the lockdown for a few hours but yesterday again imposed a 24-hour lockdown due to a spike in cases,” he said.
He said the local clubs have supported them with accommodation since the time the lockdown started. However, the rest of the expenses have been managed by the players themselves.