Pakistan cricketers looking for a chance to play in IPL
Sunday , July 22 2012 , 09:22 PM
RACHI: Pakistan’s star cricketers are hoping to return to the Indian Premier League (IPL) next year after missing out on the last four editions of what is cricket’s most lucrative competition.
A leading national player told ‘The News’ that he was confident that IPL organisers will include Pakistani cricketers at the auction of the league’s sixth edition next year.
“The way things are progressing I’m sure that we (Pakistani players) will once again be a part of IPL,” said the player, who requested anonymity.
Pakistani cricketers including popular allrounder Shahid Afridi, Shoaib Akhtar and several of their compatriots featured in the inaugural edition of the IPL back in 2008. Sohail Tanvir, the left-arm pacer, was one of the biggest success stories of the inaugural IPL.
But since then, IPL organisers have blocked their participation in the cash-rich Twenty20 league because of strained relations between Pakistan and India.
However, a recent decision by India to invite Pakistan for a limited-overs series has come as a major breakthrough and now hopes are high among fans on both side of the border that bilateral cricket ties between the two neighbours will normalise soon.
“It would be great for cricket in the region because Indo-Pak matches are essential for the sport’s growth,” said another Pakistani cricketer. “The return of Pakistani players to the IPL would be another step in the right direction,” he added.
Meanwhile, reports coming from India are suggesting that the Indian cricket board (BCCI) is seriously considering the idea of clearing Pakistani players’ participation in IPL 6.
There has been a growing feeling among the BCCI members that Pakistan players should now be allowed to play in the IPL. A proposal in this regard may be tabled when the BCCI working committee meets next, said a media report.
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