Pakistan Cricket Board (PCB) Chairman Ramiz Raja Wednesday lamented over the poor conditions of the stadiums in Pakistan, saying work is underway to improve infrastructure. Addressing a press conference, he said that applications have been submitted to get a piece of land within Islamabad to build a high-tech cricket stadium. He hoped that the state-of-the-art stadium will be ready by 2025 for the Champions Trophy.
Ramiz said that securing the rights to host ICC Champions Trophy 2025 is a big win for the country, adding: “We will ensure an international-level experience is provided the tournament”.
It may be recalled that the plan to build a stadium in the federal capital first surfaced during former PCB chairman Ehsan Mani’s tenure and instructions for it was issued by Prime Minister Imran Khan.
The stadium will also include a high-performance center and will host various international and local tournaments and fixtures.
In July this year, the director of the national high-performance center of the PCB Nadeem Khan had stated that the project was being moved along at a brisk pace.
“The creation of a state-of-the-art international cricket stadium in Islamabad will help the growth of cricket in the country. This stadium will have all the latest state-of-the-art facilities for the sport.
Steady progress is being made on the mega project and the Prime Minister will lay the foundation for it. PCB officials are in constant contact with the officials of the CDA. We are also planning on creating high-performance centers in Rawalpindi, Peshawar, and Faisalabad,” Nadeem said.
However, there are growing concerns that part of the national park and nature reserve at Lok Virsa will be cleared for the construction of the new stadium. Already, large parts of the forest have been cleared for other construction projects, further deterioration will have adverse effects on the greenery of the city.
The former chairman, Ehsan Maani had already rejected the project because of similar environmental concerns but it seems like Rameez does not care. The greedy CDA administration should remember their big claims, calling Islamabad a “world green city”.