Champions Trophy stays in Pakistan

Updated: 27 July 2008 17:46 IST

After a prolonged teleconference with eight participating countries, the ICC has decided against shifting the tournament outside Pakistan.

Champions Trophy stays in Pakistan

Karachi / Dubai:

Ending weeks of uncertainty, the International Cricket Council (ICC) today announced that Pakistan would continue to remain the host for next month's Champions Trophy despite security apprehensions.

After the ICC Board members held a teleconference, Pakistan Cricket Board (PCB) Chairman Nasim Ashraf told a news conference that the tournament would remain in its original venue after all the members of the board had taken a consensus decision.

ICC also appointed a special task force to oversee and review the implementation of a comprehensive security plan for the tournament.

Ashraf also singled out the Indian Cricket Board for its support to have the ICC event in Pakistan despite security apprehensions.

ECB chief David Morgan, BCCI president Sharad Pawar, ICC CEO Haroon Lorgat, broadcasters representatives, Ashraf, principal advisor to ICC IS Bindra, and a representative from Nicolas Styne will be on the special task force.

Pakistan ran the risk of losing Champions Trophy due to security issues and top players of Australia, England and New Zealand are still apprehensive about touring the trouble-torn country for the tournament starting on September 11.

ICC held a security briefing on Sunday for the participating nations before deciding to hold a teleconference to find a solution.

Soon after the teleconference, Ashraf told a news conference in Lahore that it was a consensus decision by the ICC Board to hold the event in Pakistan.

Ashraf also singled out the Indian Cricket Board for its support to have the ICC event in Pakistan despite security apprehensions.

"I am thankful to all the ICC member countries, especially India, for their wisdom and looking at the larger interest of the game," Ashraf said.

"Pakistan remains a safe place to organise sports events and we hope it will be a world class event," he said.

"We are committed to have full security as the government of Pakistan has given its full support to organise the Champions Trophy," Ashraf said.

Pakistan ran the risk of losing Champions Trophy due to security issues and top players of Australia, England and New Zealand are still apprehensive about touring the trouble-torn country for the tournament starting on September 11.

ICC held a security briefing on Sunday for the participating nations before deciding to hold a teleconference to find a solution.

The ICC decision to keep the Champions Trophy in Pakistan has, however, raised the possibility that countries like Australia, New Zealand and England may be forced to send second-strings teams with their top players expressing reservations about touring the country.

While Pakistan had the clear support of the three other Asian members -- India, Sri Lanka and Bangladesh -- players from Australia, New Zealand and England have showed reservations over participating in the tournament.

Topics : Cricket Sreesanth
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