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PCB backs security plans

Pakistan's hosting of the Champions Trophy should be beyond dispute because it has met all the security needs of competing teams, a Pakistan Cricket Board official said.

cricket Updated: Jul 23, 2008 17:46 IST

Pakistan's hosting of the Champions Trophy should be beyond dispute because it has met all the security needs of competing teams, the Pakistan Cricket Board's senior official said on Wednesday.

The hosting rights to September's biennial limited-overs tournament will be debated in a teleconference between the 10 full member countries of the International Cricket Council, set to start at 0800 GMT on Thursday.

Pakistan's hosting rights are in jeopardy because Australia, New Zealand and England have expressed concerns about security in the country. Sri Lanka is a standby venue.

"If it's a battle of legality and logic, we have won it," the PCB's chief operating officer Shafqat Naghmi told the Associated Press.

Naghmi said Pakistan had offered foolproof security to all the participating teams of the Champions Trophy and neutral security officials had toured Pakistan during the last two months. "But if still they say that they have reservations, what can we do?" Naghmi said.

An ICC spokesman said that, if required, voting will be held in which a two-thirds majority will be required to shift the Champions Trophy from Pakistan.

"To pass any resolution in the ICC Board's meeting, at least seven votes are required," said the spokesman.

Sri Lanka is the alternate venue for the tournament, while there had also been reports that the event might be shifted to South Africa or England.

Karachi, Lahore and Rawalpindi are scheduled to each host five Champions Trophy matches. Karachi and Lahore successfully hosted 13 Asia Cup one-day internationals that ended earlier in July.

Australia is the major test playing country that has not toured Pakistan since 1997-98 season. It was scheduled to tour Pakistan in March-April, but rescheduled it until next year due to security concerns.