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28 Jan, 2019 13:19

'It's just not cricket': Pakistan Super League bosses reject 'unhelpful' female cheerleaders idea

'It's just not cricket': Pakistan Super League bosses reject 'unhelpful' female cheerleaders idea

A proposal to have female cheerleaders perform at Pakistan Super League (PSL) matches has been rejected by the league's six franchise owners, who labeled the idea "not helpful" for teams amid cost issues and conservative values.

The initiative was pushed by the Pakistan Cricket Board (PCB), whose members suggested that the presence of female dancers at the fourth edition of the tournament, which will be played in Muslim-majority nation-states Pakistan and The United Arab Emirates (UAE) from February 14, will increase the game's popularity. However, the proposal was not supported by team owners, who refused to spend $14,000 to hire the dancers.

The franchise owners rejected the proposal, firstly objecting to them having to shell out USD 14,000 dollars and secondly because they felt the presence of cheerleaders would not be helpful in enhancing the popularity and following of the league,” a source in the PCB said.

Despite receiving assurances that the cheerleaders will be decently dressed, without donning any revealing or provocative clothes, the idea of having the girls perform at PSL matches was not approved by the owners. 

The franchise owners were assured the female cheerleaders would be wearing proper Eastern dresses and would not wear anything objectionable and they would perform in one corner of the ground where the matches are to be held,” a PCB member added stressing that some franchise owners were against male dancers, taking into account the conservative culture of Pakistani society.

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Despite its more traditional nature, cricket has been known to employ cheerleaders at matches, including at T20 games in Enlgand, where dancers and cheerleaders are commonplace and popular. 

Cricket is the most popular sport in Pakistan, home to the second-largest number of Muslims in the world after Indonesia. The fourth PSL edition is scheduled to take place from 14 February till 17 March 2019, with a total of 34 matches being played.

In the first three PSL editions, male dancers and performers were used to entertain the crowd between overs.