Inzamam says attack will leave PCB facing financial ruin
Former Pakistan captain Inzamam-ul-Haq has warned of the damaging financial implications to cricket in the country following Tuesday's militant attack on the Sri Lankan team.
Inzamam told Reuters that the Pakistan Cricket Board (PCB) could face a financial meltdown since foreign teams were unlikely to play their scheduled series in Pakistan after the attack in Lahore that left six players and a coach wounded.
"The attack on the Sri Lankans means we should brace ourselves for some tough times," Inzamam said on Wednesday.
"I don't see any team coming to Pakistan for a long time now which would affect the sources of income for the PCB."
New Zealand are the next team due to visit Pakistan later this year under the International Cricket Council (ICC) future tours schedule, but the prospect of the series taking place appears remote.
Tuesday's attack on the Sri Lankan team bus as it neared the stadium, in which eight people were killed, is the first time a visiting sports team has been attacked by suspected terrorists in Pakistan.
Inzamam pointed out that Pakistan was now almost certainly limited to just two options: Play home series' at neutral venues or be content with taking part in overseas tours only.
"In both cases Pakistan board will not earn as much money as it would hosting teams," he noted.
Pakistan is playing a one-day series against Australia at Dubai and Abu Dhabi in April-May after Ricky Ponting's team refused to tour because of security concerns.
Last year, West Indies turned down an invitation for a test series, while the ICC has already moved the Champions Trophy from Pakistan due to security issues.
Inzamam said a financial crunch could affect the earnings of the players and also hit the domestic season.
"PCB financially supports the domestic cricket structure but when their earnings fall... obviously it will affect the domestic competitions," he added.
Meanwhile, former captain Imran Khan described the attack as a security failure on part of the government.
"This incident is very tragic for Pakistan sports and one of the worst security failures. Pakistan government had assured the Sri Lankans they would provide them proper security," Imran told a private television channel.
The cricketer-turned-politician said the type of security provided to the Sri Lankans team was completely shameful and it was a disaster for Pakistan sports and its economy.