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Pakistan Cricket Board hopeful of hosting internationals despite Windies snub

Pakistan Cricket Board chairman Shaharyar Khan is hopeful that Pakistan will soon host international teams. Pakistan have not hosted a major cricketing nation since 2009 because of terrorist attacks on the Sri Lanka team.

cricket Updated: Jan 16, 2017 17:52 IST
Indo-Asian News Service
Indo-Asian News Service
Pakistan cricket team,West Indies cricket,FICA
Pakistan were hoping West Indies would accept their invitation to play two Twenty20 Internationals but the West Indies Cricket Board (WICB) has turned it down citing security concerns. (AFP)

The Pakistan Cricket Board (PCB) remains hopeful of hosting international cricket here soon despite a decision by the West Indies cricket board to pass on an offer of a two-match Twenty20 series in Lahore.

Pakistan have not hosted a major cricketing nation since 2009 because of terrorist attacks on the Sri Lanka team. The Pakistan Cricket Board was expecting Cricket West Indies to accept the invitation for the two games in March in return for the Asian side playing a similar series in Florida, United States later that month.

Security concerns of the Caribbean body however scuppered any idea of the tour. But with former England and Wales Cricket Board (ECB) chairman Giles Clarke travelling to Lahore later this month, the Pakistan Cricket Board is hoping this can ease the worries of other cricketing nations.

“Foreign teams rely a great deal on the travel advisories from their embassies in Pakistan so once that changes and becomes positive only then can we expect to convince teams (to come),” PCB chairman Shaharyar Khan said on Sunday.

“We are the confirmed hosts of the PSL (Pakistan Super League) final in Lahore, so once it’s done it will create an opening. Former England cricket head Giles Clarke is visiting Pakistan from January 28 so he will also assess the situation,” said Khan.

The Federation for International Cricketers Association (FICA) had issued a statement on Tuesday that players should not play the PSL final in March.

The Caribbean snub

A West Indies delegation was expected to visit Pakistan later this month to assess the security situation in the country, ahead of the proposed tour in March. However, Khan said the Caribbean body had indicated its unwillingness to follow through with the series.

“The West Indies board has conveyed to us verbally that the ‘thing’ is off,” Khan said. “The West Indies players’ union is not willing, so at the moment they have refused.”

West Indies are set to host Pakistan in a full series from March 31 to May 10, playing three Tests, three One-Day Internationals and two Twenty20 Internationals.

First Published: Jan 16, 2017 17:41 IST