February 18, 2019
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There is no doubt that Karachi is the spine of the economic structure of Pakistan. Besides being the hub of trade market, it used to be the city of lights with endless mediums of entertainment. But sadly, the lights faded out due to ruthless target killing and anonymous terrorism. But things are changing gradually. Call it a miracle or the dedication of people sincere to Pakistan, Karachi finally welcomed back the long lost cricket after 9 painful years. Although, the world had doubts till the last minute but Karachi successfully hosted the final match of PSL’s third edition. The match may not had an international status, but it was no less than a strong start to bring International cricket back home. This was the first cricket match to be held in Karachi after the match between Pakistan and Sri Lanka 9 years ago. The fact made this match indeed, very special. In fact, it won’t be wrong to say it was more special than the entire PSL series.
After such a long period of terrorism and social frustration among the people of Karachi, this match gained the status of ‘apple of the eye’ for everyone. Besides projecting a soft figure of Pakistan in front of the world, the final match of this year’s PSL proved the security concerns of international players baseless.
However, the crowd paid an appreciable price for all this as they went through many check points and other hardships to watch the match live. The emotional drive was enough for the Pakistani’s to overcome the hurdles they faced to reach and enter the stadium.
One of the spectator said in this regard,
“We had to walk for 500 meter to reach the first checkpoint scanners where there was a long queue for males and a shorter for female but I having my family with me had to stand in different queues which created lot of hurdle for us,”
Hashmi who reports for news agency AFP said,
“I covered the last match here nine years ago. My kids grew up without watching any game here and today they are here in stands and enjoying every bit of the match,”
The security exchange and management process was a bit frustrating but highly impressive in terms of execution and accuracy. Every alternate route connecting to the stadium was blocked by the authorities in order to avoid any mishap. The roads were closed from Millennium Mall to Dalmia, New town to Stadium, Essa Nagri to Stadium, Karsaz to stadium and from Hassan square to Stadium road. Entering the stadium without entry ticket or CNIC was impossible due to the strict checking and scrutiny. 80 CCTV cameras were placed to monitor every moment inside and outside the stadium. Security agencies like Police and Rangers were seen busy in patrolling and conducting snap checking in the entire city ahead of the security measures for the PSL final.
With the great success of this match, nation is hoping to have the entire PSL and a few international matches in the country soon enough.