Pakistan Cricket Board’s hopes of getting a big international cricket team to tour Pakistan were thrashed as New Zealand declined their offer to tour Pakistan. If the tour had gone through, the Black Caps would have returned to Pakistan after 15 years.
The Blackcaps will head to the United Arab Emirates (UAE) in October to face Pakistan in three tests, three one day internationals and three Twenty 20 matches.
PCB officials were hoping to move the T20I series to Pakistan, but the New Zealand board officials informed that it won’t be happening.
“At the end of the day, it came down to following the advisory and the security reports we’d obtained.” NZ Cricket Chairman Greg Barclay told media.
Barclay added, “There’s no doubt they (Pakistan Cricket Board) are disappointed. I think they saw a tour by a country like New Zealand as being a great precedent for them to start to build an international programme back in Pakistan. So they’re disappointed but they’re good guys, we get on really well with Pakistan, and I think they’re fully accepting of the decision that we’ve reached.”
New Zealand’s last tour to Pakistan happened in 2003 and it was cut short due to a bomb explosion in front of their hotel in Karachi. Pakistan has played most of their home games in UAE after a terrorist attack happened on the Sri Lanka team bus in Lahore.
When asked about Kiwi players open to touring Pakistan, Barclay said “I think that probably would have been difficult for a variety of reasons. We, fortunately, didn’t get to the point where we had to have those discussions.”
“We’re very sympathetic to the plight they find themselves in, we’re a member of the ICC, we’re very aware that the ICC is trying to facilitate more international cricket in Pakistan and we’re very supportive of that. But all circumstances considered, we just decided circumstances weren’t right for us to tour at the moment,” said Barclay.
Pakistan saw West Indies touring the country in 9 years for a three-match T20I series.
Barclay said that the Windies tour was taken into consideration and explained, “I can’t comment on the decision process that the West Indies went through, perhaps some of the timings may have been different as well, I just know that we went through a very thorough process and I’m comfortable with the decision that we got to.”
(with inputs from pakistantoday.com.pk)