Zimbabwe first Test playing nation set to tour Pakistan since 2009 Lahore attacks
The Sri Lankan cricket team was attacked as they toured Pakistan in March 2009. Since then no teat, has toured the country. (Source: Reuters)
Zimbabwe will become the first full ICC member nation to tour Pakistan in six years when it plays two Twenty20 internationals and three ODIs in Lahore from May 19-June 1.
“This would be an auspicious moment for Pakistan cricket and I am positive that it would open doors of international cricket in Pakistan,” Pakistan Cricket Board chairman Shaharyar Khan said in a statement on Thursday.
“I am grateful to my counterpart in Cricket Zimbabwe, Wilson Manase, for acceding to our request of sending a full side on a tour to Pakistan.”
The first Twenty20 international will be the opening match on May 22.
The PCB has hosted Kenya and Afghanistan over the last couple of years, but no Test playing country has toured Pakistan because of security concerns since gunmen attacked the Sri Lanka cricket team’s bus in Lahore in 2009. Six police officials and a van driver were killed during the attack while some Sri Lankan players were also injured.
“I am indeed confident that Zimbabwe’s incident-free tour shall be the harbinger of more and more associate and full member nations visiting us in the months and years to come,” Khan said.
Cricket’s governing body, the ICC, has been informed of the tour but is yet to confirm whether it will send officials for the five international matches at Gaddafi Stadium in Lahore.
Zimbabwe will send a team on Monday to review security arrangements before its national team arrives in Lahore on May 19.
Initially Pakistan had planned a couple of matches in Karachi but the PCB said Zimbabwe players expressed concerns over extensive travelling and the series will now only be played in Lahore.
Source:: Indian Express