Instead of India, Sri Lanka cricket team may tour Pakistan

December 19th, 2008 - 5:55 pm ICT by IANS  

Colombo, Dec 19 (IANS) Sri Lanka Cricket (SLC) Friday confirmed that it had received an invitation from the Pakistan Cricket Board (PCB) to undertake a tour in place of India and said it was willing to help Pakistan “in the hour of need”.India was to tour Pakistan in January-February to play three Tests, five one-dayers and a Twenty20 match. However, the Indian government did not clear the tour in the wake of last month’s terror attacks in Mumbai, which it has blamed on terrorists based in Pakistan. This resulted in the desperate PCB sending an invitation to Sri Lanka Thursday.

“We are not expecting any financial benefit from this tour of three Test matches and three ODIs to Pakistan. We want to help Pakistan in the hour of need because Pakistan has helped us immensely in the past,” SLC media manager Shane Fernando told IANS.

Fernando said that the SLC was “very positive about the PCB invitation and keen to undertake the tour” though a final decision in this regard would be taken at the board meeting later Friday.

Sri Lanka will be free of any international commitments after Jan 16, till which time they are on a tour of Bangladesh. The first Test between Sri Lanka and Bangladesh is scheduled to begin Dec 26.

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