Says Australia will think hundred times before cancelling their tour
The New Zealand cricket authorities are succumbing to Pakistan’s pressure and will reschedule their tour to the country, Pakistan Cricket Board chairman Ramiz Raja has said.
New Zealand unilaterally withdrew from their tour to Pakistan last month on the eve of the first One-day International citing security threats. They were scheduled to play three ODIs and five Twenty-20 internationals.
They took the decision after being directly told by the New Zealand government about a threat, which, Pakistan government said was unknown to the local security agencies.
The step was heavily criticised by the local and global cricket community.
Ramiz, while briefing the Sentate Standing Committee on Sports on Thursday, said the PCB has written a strong-worded letter to the International Cricket Council.
“They are under pressure and will reschedule the series,” said the PCB chief. “Good news is due next week.”
New Zealand’s withdrawal was followed by the England and Wales Cricket Board’s refusal to send their men’s and women’s team for their scheduled tours to Pakistan in October.
The ECB was taken under the roller by UK Prime Minister Boris Johnson, former cricketers and journalists.
British High Commissioner to Pakistan Christian Turner had also revealed that the ECB’s decision was independent and not influenced by the government.
Ramiz said ECB chief Ian Watmore admitted that the board made a mistake. Watmore, in a statement, said the ECB will value England’s next year’s tour to the country.
Ramiz Raja said the decision to cancel their next year’s tour to Pakistan won’t be an easy one for the Australian cricket authorities.
Australia are scheduled to visit Pakistan for two Test matches, three One-day Internationals and as many Twenty-20 Internationals in February-March next year.
However, New Zealand and England’s pull-out has left a question mark over Australia’s first campaign in the country after 1998.
Cricket Australia had said earlier that it is “monitoring the situation and and talk with the relevant authorities once more information becomes known”.
The pressure New Zealand and England are facing now, Ramiz suggested, will get to Australia as well if they think about doing the same.
“Australia will think a hundred times before considering to cancel their tour ,” Ramiz said while briefing the Senate Standing Committee on Sports on Thursday.
He said West Indies will also go ahead with their Pakistan tour, which is scheduled for December this year.