The Pakistan Cricket Board (PCB) has requested Australia and New Zealand to send their teams to Pakistan to play T20Is in a bid to revive international cricket in the country.
A PCB official told Press Trust of India that during International Cricket Council’s (ICC) meeting in Kolkatta last month, chairman Najam Sethi and chief operating officer Subhan Ahmed talked to Australian and New Zealand cricket board’s officials and placed their request.
“The two boards have been requested to play the T20 matches of their series in Pakistan to help support the PCB in bringing back international cricket to the country,” Najam Sethi said.
Pakistan is scheduled to host three Tests and a T20I against Australia in October followed by three-match Test series, five ODIs and three T20Is against New Zealand in their adopted home, UAE.
The PCB has already hosted World XI in a three-match T20I series. Sri Lanka also toured the country for a one-off T20I game followed by West Indies who played three T20Is at the National Stadium Karachi. Pakistan has also successfully staged finals of PSL 2 and PSL 3 in Lahore and Karachi respectively.
“The PCB is trying to follow a slow and steady process to bring back international cricket fully to Pakistan,” the official said.
Australia and New Zealand are reluctant to send their teams to Pakistan due to security concerns. However, Giles Clarke, who heads the ICC’s special task force on Pakistan cricket presented a positive report during the ICC meeting in Kolkatta about international cricket returning to Pakistan.
Pakistan’s security arrangements during World XI, Sri Lanka, West Indies and PSL finals earned praise from board members as well as from independent security experts and from independent reports of security experts.