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Wolves gear up for India

Merely six months after protests marred the participation of Pakistan players in the Hockey India League (HIL) and the ICC Women's World Cup, India is set to host another team from Pakistan. Firoz Mirza reports.

cricket Updated: Jul 26, 2013 10:14 IST
Firoz Mirza
pakistani T20 team

Merely six months after protests marred the participation of Pakistan players in the Hockey India League (HIL) and the ICC Women's World Cup, India is set to host another team from Pakistan.

Pakistan domestic T20 league champions Faisalabad Wolves will feature in the qualifiers of the Champions League starting on September 17.

With Mumbai not hosting any match, the situation could be termed less volatile but that doesn't give much room for the cricket Board to relax as a lot will depend on the relationship between the two neighbours in the lead up to the tournament.

"What happened in the past was a totally different issue. At the moment we are not dealing with that kind of situation. We will take up the issue in Sunday's working committee meeting," BCCI interim chief, Jagmohan Dalmiya, told HT.

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Being cautious
The Ministry of Home Affairs also hoped the BCCI will make necessary arrangements for hosting the Pakistan team. "There is a routine set of mechanism for such things. As per procedure, the Indian cricket board, which is organising the event, will take necessary precautions," said SK Dhatwalia, MHA spokesperson.

Though India successfully hosted Pakistan in December-January for a short series of two T20Is and three ODIs, relations between the two countries nosedived again after two Indian soldiers were killed at the Line of Control (LoC).

There was strong reaction over the incident in India and Shiv Sena activists stormed the Mahindra Hockey Stadium in Mumbai to protest against the participation of Pakistan players in the Mumbai franchise of HIL. Protesters also managed to sneak into the National stadium in Delhi while a league match was on.

Opposition to Pakistan's participation also forced the shifting of matches in the Women's World Cup with all their matches moved to Cuttack from Mumbai.

According to the CLT20 schedule released, Faisalabad Wolves will play two matches in the qualifiers in Hyderabad. The qualifiers will begin with the Pakistan team contesting against New Zealand T20 champions Otago Volts on September 17.