Fears move will affect teams touring in future
Pakistan Cricket Board Chairman Ramiz Raja has hit out at cricket’s western bloc after England abandoned its tour of Pakistan citing security concerns.
The development was made just days after New Zealand called off their tour of Pakistan citing the security alert issued by their government just before the start of the first ODI at Pindi Cricket Stadium.
“I am severely disappointed in England’s withdrawal, it was expected because this western bloc gets united unfortunately and tries to back each other,” said the former captain in a video released by the PCB.
England’s men and women teams were due to play two T20Is in Rawalpindi on October 13 and 14. The women’s team was also scheduled to play the three-match ODI series from October 17.
“This is a lesson for us because we go out of our way to accommodate and pamper these sides when they visit, he said. “And when we go there, we undergo strict quarantines and we tolerate their admonishments, but there is a lesson in this. That is, that from now on we will only go as far as is in our interest.”
He feared that the move will also affect the teams touring Pakistan in near future. “New Zealand, then England, now we have a West Indies series that can also be hit, and Australia who is already reconsidering,” he said.
“This — England, Australia, New Zealand — is all one bloc. Who can we complain to? We thought they were our own but they haven’t accepted us as theirs.”
He vowed to improve the cricket economy so these countries remain interested in playing against Pakistan.
“These teams would not have declined to play Pakistan if we had a big cricket economy or very strong team,” the former captain said. “So, the lesson is that we need to improve and expand our cricket economy so that these countries remain interested in playing us.”