Pakistan relieved by safe Australia series

Updated: 08 May 2009 09:47 IST

Pakistan's cricket authorities breathed a sigh of relief after safely hosting their series against Australia on neutral venues.

Pakistan relieved by safe Australia series
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Dubai:

Pakistan's cricket authorities breathed a sigh of relief on Friday after safely hosting their series against Australia on neutral venues, saying it would help to build long-lasting relationships.

Pakistan was forced to move the series to Dubai and Abu Dhabi after Australia refused to play in the troubled country over security fears.

The five-match one-day series and a one-off Twenty20 match were Pakistan's first since terrorists attacked the Sri Lankan team bus in Lahore in March.

Seven Sri Lankan players and their assistant coach were injured in the attacks, in which eight policemen were killed.

The Pakistan Cricket Board's (PCB) director of cricket operations Zakir Khan said the safe hosting of the series was a great satisfaction.

"Australia co-operated very well for this series and we got two very cordial and welcoming hosts in Dubai and Abu Dhabi," said Khan.

"It was great to have this series in a safe environment, for which we are thankful to our hosts."

Australia, who have not toured Pakistan since 1998 over security fears, had not played Pakistan in a one-day match since 2005.

Khan thanked the United Arab Emirates (UAE) government and cricket officials for helping to make the series a success.

"Dubai and Abu Dhabi governments provided the infrastructure and police to look after the security of the series and everything was done in a meticulous manner," said Khan, a former Pakistan paceman.

He said both Dubai and Abu Dhabi were world-class cricket venues.

"Dubai has been a wonderful addition to the cricket grounds of the world and I hope they host more international cricket in future," Khan said.

"Abu Dhabi has been hosting cricket for three, four years now and it has made its place at the world level," said Khan.

As security fears persists in Pakistan, they are also likely to play their series against New Zealand in the UAE in October-November.

Topics : Cricket Sreesanth
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