‘You all should check coronavirus’, the secret behind cancellation of PSL
All bilateral series were closed in March due to coronavirus. The first ODI between Australia and New Zealand was played behind closed doors but the remainder of the series was later canceled. But in the meantime, the Pakistan Super League (PSL) continued.
After a long time, the Pakistan Cricket Board (PCB) wanted to finish the tournament on their own home soil. But a warning stopped them.
Only semifinals and finals were left in the PSL. The tournament had been stopped in this situation. Salman Iqbal told how that decision was made. Karachi Kings owner told BBC Podcast (audio talk) ‘The Doosra’ about the time.
Alex Hales left Pakistan a few days before the semifinal for the fears of coronavirus infection. During the course of the PSL, COVID-19 took a formidable turn in Pakistan. But after returning home, Hales found the symptoms of coronavirus infection in himself. The English opener quickly called Iqbal,
“It was 2 am in Pakistan then. At that time Alex Hales sent a message saying, ‘Boss, I’m getting some signs of COVID-19 in me. I think all of you should check coronavirus.”
After such a message, it did not take long for the terror to spread. Iqbal’s voice seemed to be appalled at that moment, “Then coach Dean Jones called me. Said he wants to meet and discuss. We were all scared. If the infection does occur, you will have to stay in isolation. I tried to send Hales to Birmingham just in time to be tested. I asked my London doctor if he could go. But that had not been possible.
“The teams were preparing for the semifinals in the evening. At that time, a new order had come and that was to test coronavirus. Everyone was terrified and the next day the tournament was postponed.”