Ali Tareen-led wins Multan Sultans franchise rights for sixth PSL team

LAHORE: The Ali Tareen-led Multan consortium on Thursday won the franchise rights for the sixth team of the Pakistan Super League (PSL). The rights have been awarded for seven years.

Ali, the son of former Pakistan Tehreek-i-Insaf (PTI) secretary general Jahangir Tareen, had confirmed that the bid had been submitted. According to a tweet by PSL, the Pakistan Cricket Board (PCB) had set the reserve price at $5.21 million per year for a period of seven years. “This reserve price has been exceeded by the bid winners.”

The spot for the sixth team was up for grabs after Multan Sultans were disqualified after appearing in just one edition of the league held early this year.

On November 10, the PCB terminated the agreement which gave franchise rights of Multan Sultans PSL team to the Schon Group due to their inability to meet the financial obligations under the PSL agreement.

Following this, PCB invited interested bidders for the sale of the team. Though a good response was received from different bidders, only two could qualify for the decisive stage, a PakĀ­istan Cricket Board official had said earlier.

The 2019 edition of the PSL tournament will kick off with an opening ceremony and match in Dubai on February 14.

While speaking to the media after the announcement, Tareen highlighted the fact that a team from South Punjab had once again been included in the PSL, and added that they would search for talent throughout the region.

“Through PSL, young talent advances,” he said. Tareen said the sixth team would retain Multan in its name, but called for suggestions for a second moniker for the side. He said that if his legal team had no reservations, he was open to retaining the ‘Multan Sultans’ name.

“I also request the PCB that cricket shouldn’t be dedicated to one month of the year; instead, tournaments should be held throughout the year,” he further said.