Home South Asia Pakistan Sri Lanka agrees to play 3 ODIs, 3 T20s in Pakistan

Sri Lanka agrees to play 3 ODIs, 3 T20s in Pakistan

It has been a long time that the international teams have stayed away from Pakistan over security concerns. In October 2017, Sri Lanka played a T20 match in Lahore for the first time since a terror attack near the same venue in March 2009.

Sri Lanka

News Desk |

Sri Lanka Cricket (SLC) has decided to play three one-day internationals but ruled out the possibility of playing test matches in Pakistan.

“We are not in a position to send the team to Pakistan to play the two Tests, but we will be in Pakistan for about eight days to play the ODIs or the T20 matches,” a Sri Lankan minister Harin Fernando told reporters in Colombo.

No dates were announced, but the minister said the games would be scheduled for later this year. Citing safety fears, Fernando said two Tests could instead be played in the United Arab Emirates (UAE), where Pakistan has held many of its home series.

A world XI side consisting of high profile players like Faf du Plessis and Hashim Amla also played a T20I series against Pakistan.

It has been a long time that the international teams have stayed away from Pakistan over security concerns. In October 2017, Sri Lanka played a T20 match in Lahore for the first time since a terror attack near the same venue in March 2009.

That attack had left eight people dead and seven Sri Lanka players and staff injured.

Pakistan Set to Host Sri Lanka for First Test Match Since 2009

Test cricket was expected to return to Pakistan as the Sri Lanka Cricket (SLC)’s security delegation sent to inspect conditions in Pakistan had given a ‘very positive feedback’ to the Sri Lankan cricket board.

The SLC had sent a security delegation to visit Pakistan after the Pakistan Cricket Board (PCB) gave them an offer to play one match in Pakistan — it’s first of the World Test Championship.

It was hoped that if everything worked out, Pakistan could host its first Test match since the Lahore attack on Sri Lanka’s team bus in March 2009. However, things could not be materialized.

Read more: Mohammad Amir retires from test cricket

According to a report by ESPNcricinfo, the security delegation gave SLC “very positive feedback” upon its return from Lahore and Karachi. “The feedback we got from the security team was very positive,” SLC CEO Ashley de Silva told ESPNcricinfo. “We’ll be talking to the PCB about some alternatives before we arrive at a decision. The government will be consulted as well,” he said.

The report said that the major concern for the SLC was to obtain individual players’ consent to tour Pakistan.

In July, PCB had announced that SLC has sent reassurance that their security team will be visiting Pakistan in August. PCB’s official Twitter account had said: “The Sri Lanka cricket board has assured PCB of sending a security team. A delegation of the Sri Lankan cricket board will visit Pakistan in August. The finalized dates for the delegation’s arrival will be announced soon. A Test series between Sri Lanka and Pakistan is scheduled for October.”

Return of International Cricket?

Pakistan last hosted a Test match on home soil in 2009. International cricket in the country was largely suspended after March that year when armed militants used bullets and grenades to attack the Sri Lanka team bus taking the players to the Gaddafi Stadium.

Pakistan has been starved of international cricket since the attack, however, some teams have toured to play limited-overs cricket and few matches of PSL have also taken place in the country. There are also talks about this year’s PSL being played fully in Pakistan.

Read more: Pakistan set to host Sri Lanka for first test match since 2009

A world XI side consisting of high profile players like Faf du Plessis and Hashim Amla also played a T20I series against Pakistan.

In October 2017, a Sri Lanka team did play a one-off T20I in Lahore, but without a number of prominent players in the squad.

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