x Abu Dhabi, UAEThursday 27 July 2017

Visitors aim to net Dh9.2m

The Pakistan Cricket Board expects to net approximately US$2.5 million from their series against South Africa.

The Pakistan Cricket Board (PCB) expects to net approximately US$2.5 million (Dh9.2m) from their series against South Africa.

The gate receipts will be shared between the PCB and the owners of the two host venues - the Abu Dhabi Cricket Council and Dubai Sports City - and the PCB will get all the sponsorship and television revenue.

The projected earnings from ticket sales for the matches in Abu Dhabi is approximately Dh2.5m.

That does not include money from Tuesday's opening Twenty20 (T20) match, which went towards the Pakistan flood relief fund.

The matches played in Dubai are expected to generate Dh3m.

The last two matches in the series are Tests, and Dubai Sports City is doing its best to boost attendance.

Spectators who buy tickets in premium and platinum seats (Dh100-Dh200) for any of the three one-day internationals (ODIs) in Dubai will get that seat for free for all five days of the Test match.

Yet the Pakistan board remains cautious.

"Test matches being played in any country other than England do not really generate any sort of income," a PCB official said.

The series last summer against Australia in the UK "was successful because it raised a great amount of income for us", the official said.

The PCB believes that if the series against South Africa had been played in England, they could have cleared closer to $3.5m, given the higher ticket prices and the expected bigger attendance at the Test matches.

The UAE has historically been a favourite neutral venue for cricket, particularly ODIs.

Sharjah, in its heyday, hosted 200 ODIs, 108 of them featuring Pakistan, while in recent years Abu Dhabi's Zayed Cricket Stadium and the Dubai International Cricket Stadium have hosted 14 and two ODIs respectively, with Pakistan appearing in all of them.

pradley@thenational.ae