India refusal to tour Pakistan will be frustrating: Kaneria

December 3rd, 2008 - 2:46 pm ICT by IANS  

Karachi, Dec 3 (IANS) Pakistan leg-spinner Danish Kaneria has said that it would be very frustrating for him if India refused to visit Pakistan for a much-awaited cricket series in Jan-Feb next year.Kaneria, who is hoping to make his Pakistan comeback in the home Test series against India starting from Jan 13, termed Pakistan-India contests as “something even bigger than the Ashes” and urged Mahendra Singh Dhoni’s men to tour Pakistan in the greater interest of cricket.

“A Pakistan-India series enthralls millions of cricket fans on both sides of the border and the rest of the world. No other matches can match the passion involved which is why I believe that the series between our two countries is bigger than the Ashes,” said the Karachi-based Kaneria, the only Hindu in the Pakistan team.

Kaneria last played for Pakistan in the Bangalore Test in November 2007 and has since been out of the national team. Previous selectors believed that he was not good enough for limited overs cricket and since Pakistan was left without a single Test in 2008 following Australia’s refusal to come here earlier this year because of security concerns, Kaneria failed to return to the Pakistan team.

However, Abdul Qadir - Pakistan’s new chief selectors and a former Test leg-spinner - has given his backing to Kaneria by saying that Pakistan will provide him with more opportunities in the coming seasons.

Kaneria said that he has fully recovered from a finger injury and is now aiming to regain his form ahead of the series against India which is in serious doubt in the wake of last week’s Mumbai killings.

Kaneria said that India should not scrap the tour. “It’s very important for cricket that the Pakistan-India series takes place. The Pakistani government has assured best possible security arrangements for the Indian team and I’m sure they would be completely safe here,” he concluded.

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