Pakistan mulls series switch to New Zealand

Updated: 19 April 2009 13:33 IST

Pakistan are considering whether to switch a home series to New Zealand after the Black Caps refused to tour the troubled country, a cricket official said.

Pakistan mulls series switch to New Zealand

Dubai:

Pakistan are considering whether to switch a home series to New Zealand after the Black Caps refused to tour the troubled country, a cricket official said on Sunday.

New Zealand were scheduled to tour Pakistan in November-December for a three-Test and five-match one-day series but had hinted they will not tour following attacks on the Sri Lankan team in Lahore last month.

The brazen attacks, which left seven Sri Lankan players and their assistant coach injured besides killing eight policemen, put paid to Pakistan's chances of hosting international cricket for the foreseeable future.

The International Cricket Council on Friday stripped Pakistan of its share of matches in the 2011 World Cup, citing the "uncertain security situation" in the country.

Pakistan Cricket Board (PCB) chairman Ijaz Butt said he held detailed meetings with New Zealand Cricket chief executive Justin Vaughan here and was considering their offer to switch the series to New Zealand.

"We have discussed the series but have yet to reach a final decision on it," Butt told AFP. "At the moment New Zealand are averse to touring Pakistan. So among the options available, the best is to play in New Zealand."

Butt said Pakistan can save a lot of money by playing in New Zealand.

"The recent series cancellations in Pakistan have hit our finances, so by playing in New Zealand we can save a lot of money on security arrangements and on various other things," said Butt, who took over as chairman last year.

Pakistan is spending a huge amount on private security guards for its limited over series against Australia, starting here from Wednesday.

The series was relocated to the United Arab Emirates (UAE) after Australia refused to send its team to Pakistan on security grounds.

"If we play in New Zealand, the cost of the security comes to zero, and further the hotels are cheaper than in the UAE. And after playing in New Zealand our team can move to Australia for another series," said Butt.

Pakistan is due to start a tour of Australia in late December.

Butt said all the factors will be considered before taking a decision.

"We also have the option of playing in the UAE, but we want to take all the factors into consideration. Not playing at home is frustrating but we have to give our players some cricket, wherever it may be."

Vaughan said touring Pakistan is not a viable option.

"We are keen to host their series and will seek no profits if it is played on our grounds."

New Zealand's last tour to Pakistan in 2002 was hit by a suicide attack outisde their hotel which killed 14 people. They abandoned the tour without playing the second Test.



Topics : Cricket Sreesanth
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