PCB officials to meet CA for proposed one-day series

January 26th, 2009 - 9:14 pm ICT by IANS  

Karachi, Jan 26 (IANS) Ijaz Butt, the Pakistan Cricket Board (PCB) chairman, will be meeting top Cricket Australia (CA) officials in Perth Feb 4 in a bid to convince them to send the Australian team for a proposed one-day series in Pakistan.The PCB chief said in an interview that he would be holding an important meeting with CA officials following the International Cricket Council (ICC) executive board meetings starting in the Western Australian city from Jan 31.

Butt said that during his meeting with CA officials, he will make a presentation over the security measures Pakistan will take to ensure the safety of the Australian players during the proposed series in April.

He said the presentation will be based on the security arrangements made for the recently-concluded home series against Sri Lanka. The three-match series concluded in Lahore, Jan 24 without any incident.

“The smooth manner in which the series against Sri Lanka was conducted is another proof of the fact that Pakistan is a safe venue for international cricket,” said Butt, a former Pakistan Test opener. “We believe that other top teams including Australia should also tour Pakistan.”

Australia is supposed to visit Pakistan in April for a proposed ODI series. The Aussies scraped their tour of Pakistan last year because of security apprehensions but later agreed to tour the country in 2009 and 2010 to compensate for the cancellation of the series last year.

However, Butt acknowledged that Australia is unlikely to visit Pakistan this year either because of security fears. Butt pointed out that Australia believes that since it has its soldiers posted in neigbouring Afghanistan, the Aussie cricketers might be at a risk in Pakistan.

Butt said that he will try to convince Australia to tour Pakistan but added that the PCB is also open to the option of playing the series at a neutral venue. He said that the Board can host the series at an offshore venue in either UAE, Malaysia or England.

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