Stringent security in place for PSL final in Karachi

Peshawar Islamabad arrive in Karachi for PSL final

Widely deemed as Economic Hub of Pakistan, the Country's most populous City Karachi is poised to entertain the Cricket World by hosting the Final of PSL 2018 between Peshawar Zalmi and Islamabad United at its National Stadium tonight. -AFP Cricket fans wave the national flag during PSL final match between Peshawar Zalmi and Islamabad United.

The Twenty20 match has great significance for Pakistan as it gradually welcomes back global cricket, which ground to a halt after a deadly attack on Sri Lanka's Test team in Lahore in 2009 which killed eight people and injured seven visiting players.

Thousands of security personnel were deployed to ensure maximum security at the Karachi National Stadium.

The attacks left Pakistan cricket forced into exile, with global teams refusing to tour the terror-hit country over security fears and the national team left to play its home matches in United Arab Emirates (UAE).

A delighted PCB chairman Najam Sethi told the Karachi crowd that he hoped they would return when the West Indies plays three Twenty20 internationals there on April 1-3.

'Pakistan is a place where I have a great connection and I feel proud that I am part of the efforts to revive global cricket in Pakistan, he said.

Waqar Younis said that Karachi is cricket loving city and it is a very important moment for Pakistan especially Karachi that worldwide players arrived in the country.

The first 31 matches of the PSL were again played in Dubai and Sharjah before the two play-offs in Lahore, highlighting the improvement in security situation after military operations in the troubled north-west of the country.

"Pakistan is full of cricket fans and it's a great thing that cricket is back in Pakistan, hopefully it will be a success", said 16-year-old cricket enthusiast Ria Martin.

Amid security concerns, extra security measures coupled with special traffic plans have been taken in and outside the Stadium to avoid any untoward incident as apart from foreigner players, high profile personalities including Prime Minister Shahid Khaqan Abbasi, Federal Ministers and leadership of mainstream political parties would also be present in the Final.

Mahira Khan, Pakistan's most loved actress is the true team ambassador of Peshawar Zalmi.

But some worldwide PSL players remain reluctant to play in Pakistan.

"This match will send a positive image of Pakistan across the world".

The last major game with worldwide players in Karachi was in February 2009, a Pakistan-Sri Lanka test.

Lahore Lahore hai and Karachi Karachi hai, and this guy said it.

"I am so happy that so many people have come and the security is good too", said Rida.

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