LAHORE: Chairman Pakistan Cricket Board (PCB) Shaharyar Khan said on Thursday that Pakistan was hopeful of reviving ties with arch-rival India with a series in December following what he called a “successful” meeting with his counterpart in New Delhi.
Shaharyar Khan visited India earlier this week and met his Indian counterpart Jagmohan Dalmiya as well as finance and information minister Arun Jaitley.
Khan said he was confident that bilateral series — suspended since the Mumbai attacks in 2008 — would be resurrected.
“It was a successful tour and I met Dalmiya and Jaitley to talk about the revival of Indo-Pak series,” Khan told reporters.
“Jaitley told me that he feels that the green light will be given. It’s not given yet but will be given in the next two months.”
Pakistan and India signed a memorandum of understanding (MOU) last year to play six series from 2015-2023 pending their governments’ clearance, four of which will be hosted by Pakistan.
The first series comprising two Tests, five one-dayers and two Twenty20 internationals is scheduled for December-January in the United Arab Emirates (UAE), Pakistan’s adopted home since 2009.
Pakistan have been forced to play their home series in UAE since militants attacked the Sri Lankan team bus in 2009, forcing the suspension of international cricket on home soil.
“When we signed the MOU there was a different government and now there is a new government so the Indian Board has to take permission with the incumbent one.”
He also welcomed Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s stance on the issue.
“After my meetings, PM Modi has given a statement in a parliamentary party meeting that he wants to play cricket with Pakistan, which is encouraging,” said Khan, a former foreign secretary instrumental in reviving ties in 2004.
“I told Dalimya that you, as then Indian cricket chief, set aside political problems in 2004 to play a historic series in Pakistan and that paved the way for people-to-people contact as well,” he added.
India last toured Pakistan in 2006 while Pakistan toured India in 2007. India also toured Pakistan to play in the multinational Asia Cup in 2008. -AFP