The Pakistan Cricket Board (PCB) on Monday unveiled the national team’s official kit for the World Cup 2023 at a ceremony at the Gaddafi Stadium in Lahore.
The World Cup is scheduled to take place from Oct 5 to Nov 19 in India. Pakistan’s opening match in the tournament is set for Oct 6 against the Netherlands in Hyderabad, while the highly anticipated match against arch-rivals India will take place in Ahmedabad on Oct 14.
In a press release issued on Monday, Zaka Ashraf, head of the PCB Management Committee, termed the unveiling of the kit a “momentous stride” forward as the national team gears up for the upcoming mega event.
Dubbed the “Star Nation Jersey,” the PCB emphasised that the official kit holds significance beyond being just a piece of apparel.
According to the press release, the jersey embodies the “profound connection between Pakistan’s cricketing heroes and their steadfast supporters”.
Drawing inspiration from “celestial bodies, each star symbolises brilliance, aspiration, and the radiant glow” of the achievements of the number one ranked One Day International (ODI) team, the statement said.
“This design philosophy encapsulates the spirit of cricketing excellence, resonating deeply with every Pakistani cricket enthusiast,” it added.
The PCB statement quoted Ashraf as saying that the jersey bore witness to the bond between the cricketers and their fans who had supported the national outfit in every game.
“This jersey encapsulates our rich cricketing heritage and the luminous future that awaits,” Zaka added.
Road to World Cup
Pakistan’s participation in the tournament was first put in doubt following a row over the hosting of the Asia Cup, for which India had refused to send its cricket team to the country.
In turn, Pakistan had made its cricket team’s visit to India for World Cup conditional on the Indian team’s visit to the neighbouring country for the Asia Cup.
A truce was eventually called after Pakistan agreed to host the Asia Cup in September on the basis of a hybrid model.
Then in June this year, after the schedule for the World Cup was announced, the Pakistan Cricket Board said that it would still need government clearance for any tour to India, including World Cup match venues.
Later in a statement, released by the foreign office on August 6, the government approved sending the cricket team to India to participate in the World Cup, maintaining that Pakistan has always believed: “sports should not be mixed with politics”.