Australia’s tour of Pakistan in Danger? Tim Paine thinks some players might decide against travelling to Pakistan
A delegation of officials from Cricket Australia and the players’ association will visit Pakistan in December to overlook the security and other arrangements related to the players' welfare.
The schedule of the Australian cricket team’s first tour to Pakistan in more than two decades was announced yesterday. The two teams will play three Tests and four white-ball games against each other. Karachi, Lahore and Rawalpindi will be the host of this historic cricket series.
Although, the two cricket boards have mutually announced the schedule but the series is yet to be given the security green light. A delegation of officials from Cricket Australia and the players’ association will visit Pakistan in December to overlook the security and other arrangements related to the players’ welfare.
Australian captain, Tim Paine, has already expressed his concerns about some players deciding against traveling to Pakistan.
“There’ll be some guys who will be happy to take the experts’ advice and others will want to know a bit more,” Paine said on SEN on Tuesday morning. “If we’re totally honest, there might be some people who aren’t comfortable going regardless.
“That’s happened before with tours going to other countries going back forever. Again there are issues that will I’m sure pop up. We’ll discuss it, people get the right answers and feel comfortable, then we’ll get hopefully the best team we can. At the end of the day, it comes down to the individual.”
The Australian captain was part of the World XI team, which toured Pakistan for an exhibition series in 2017. He recalled the security arrangement during the World XI tour. “We had helicopters overhead, roads shut down five kilometres around us, checkpoints like every kilometre into the ground, it was extraordinary.”
After years of hard work done by the PCB, international cricket teams were finally showing confidence in the security situation in Pakistan. However, the New Zealand cricket team’s last minute unilateral postponement of their tour has yet again made things difficult for the cricket board to convince foreign teams. Following New Zealand cricket team’s decision, the England Cricket Board also decided not to send its team to Pakistan.
The ECB’s decision was massively criticized by its own former cricketers and pundits. The England cricket board’s chief resigned following the backlash. Now, Tom Harrison –ECB chief executive – will arrive in Pakistan in a bid to mend ties with Pakistan cricket board. He will be meeting chairman PCB, Ramiz Raja, as well as Prime Minister Imran Khan.
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