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Pakistan ready to host top cricketing nations in 2021: PCB

By: PTI |

Up to date: November 21, 2020 3:03:20 pm

Babar Azam is main the Pakistan cricket group in all three cricket codecs now. (PCB)

After practically a decade of internet hosting no residence take a look at matches as a result of a terrorist assault on a rival group’s bus in 2009, Pakistan says it’s able to welcome main cricketing nations like South Africa, New Zealand, England and West Indies in 2021.

“We’re working massively by way of constructing relationships, nurturing these relationships with (different) cricket boards,” Wasim Khan, chief government of the Pakistan Cricket Board, advised The Related Press.

South Africa is because of go to Pakistan in January to play a two-test collection which is a part of world take a look at championship, adopted by three Twenty20s.

New Zealand is penciled in for 3 ODIs and 5 Twenty20s in September, adopted by two Twenty20s in opposition to England at Karachi. It is going to be England’s first tour to Pakistan since 2005.

The PCB has additionally deliberate a house collection in opposition to West Indies in December.

“We’ve got a chock-a-block eight to 10 months arising for us on the street taking part in at residence,” Khan mentioned.

“We’re additionally in discussions with Cricket Australia. They’re as a result of be touring throughout the 2022 season, we’re taking a look at them coming for an prolonged time frame.”

Khan believes these gamers had a big function in portraying Pakistan’s enhancing picture amongst cricket-playing nations.(Screengrab)

When Sri Lanka’s group bus got here beneath a terrorist assault in March 2009, the doorways of worldwide cricket remained shut on Pakistan till Zimbabwe grew to become the primary test-playing nation to play limited-overs collection at Lahore in 2015.
A bus carrying the Sri Lankan cricketers, half of a bigger convoy, was fired upon by 12 gunmen close to Gaddafi Stadium in Lahore. The cricketers had been on their technique to play the third day of the second take a look at in opposition to Pakistan.

Six Pakistan cops and two civilians had been killed and 6 members of the Sri Lanka group had been wounded. The remainder of the take a look at match and tour was referred to as off.

Check cricket solely returned to Pakistan late final 12 months when Sri Lanka performed two five-day video games at Rawalpindi and Karachi. Bangladesh additionally performed a take a look at match earlier than its second take a look at was referred to as off as a result of COVID-19.

In between the Zimbabwe and Bangladesh excursions, a franchise-based home Twenty20 league- the Pakistan Tremendous League- performed an enormous function in urgent Pakistan’s claims to host worldwide video games.

Gamers like Shane Watson of Australia and South Africans Dale Steyn and A.B. de Villiers had been amongst some huge names that toured Pakistan and have performed for varied city-based franchise groups.

Khan believes these gamers had a big function in portraying Pakistan’s enhancing picture amongst cricket-playing nations.

“A variety of these gamers return to their very own nations and say, what? Pakistan is without doubt one of the most secure locations to play,” Khan mentioned.

“These are these cricketers who’re related to their very own cricket boards, who’re worldwide cricketers, who maybe had a (completely different) notion of Pakistan earlier than they got here right here.”

Tight safety with cricket group buses closely guarded by armed personnel is sort of regular in Pakistan every time abroad contingents journey to the stadium from resorts, typically blocking already heavy visitors on main roads of huge cities like Lahore and Karachi.

“Sure, we’ll proceed to offer state-level safety for so long as doable, we’ll by no means develop into complacent,” Khan mentioned.
Khan additionally desires to arrange a limited-overs collection in opposition to neighboring Afghanistan someplace subsequent 12 months, after

Pakistan Prime Minister Imran Khan, a former cricket captain for the nation, visited Kabul and prolonged an invite to Afghan nationwide group this week.

“We’ll do the whole lot we are able to to discover a slot within the calendar to rearrange fixtures in opposition to Afghanistan,” Wasim Khan mentioned.

Whereas Khan has managed to liaise with nearly all of the cricketing boards all over the world since he joined the PCB final 12 months, he doesn’t count on a resumption of the Pakistan-India cricket rivalry anytime quickly.

Political tensions between India and Pakistan, particularly over a long-standing territorial dispute within the Kashmir area, have seen each nations taking part in in opposition to one another solely in main worldwide tournaments like Champions Trophy and World Cups.

“Ought to we be taking part in India? Completely,” Khan mentioned. “May we be taking part in them? In all probability not for the foreseeable future.”

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