x Abu Dhabi, UAEMonday 24 July 2017

Emirates can step in

The Pakistan coach Intikhab Alam has asked for the forthcoming Test series to be played in the UAE if India refuse to tour his troubled country.

Alam prefers to play at a neutral venue than in India.
Alam prefers to play at a neutral venue than in India.

ABU DHABI // The Pakistan coach Intikhab Alam has asked for the forthcoming Test series to be played in the UAE if India refuse to tour his troubled country. India are scheduled to tour Pakistan from Jan 4-Feb 19 for three Test matches and five one-day internationals.

"First of all, I think India should come to Pakistan," Alam said yesterday. "(But) if for any reason the tour does not go ahead as planned, I think playing at neutral venue is the best option." "I saw the new stadium in Dubai which has a capacity of around 25,000 spectators and with Abu Dhabi also having good facilities I think both these venues could be utilised for the Test series," said Alam. The Dubai Sports City ground, however, will not be ready by that time leaving Abu Dhabi and Sharjah the viable candidates.

The Pakistan Board members said they were "delighted" with the facilities and ground for last week's three one-day matches with the West Indies, which Pakistan won 3-0. Meanwhile, Mohammad Yousuf reiterated that he was the country's best batsman and there was no one to replace him after he was banned for joining the ICL. "I don't think there is anybody good enough to replace me in the team." "It's all about respect," Yousuf added. "I could make a lot more money while playing for Pakistan than by joining ICL."

The Lahore High Court has asked the Pakistan Cricket Board for "the full record" of Shoaib Akhtar's misdemeanours as the fast bowler's protracted appeal against his 18-month ban continues. The 33-year-old is contesting both the ban - which he feels would effectively end his international career - and the seven million rupees fine. The case has finally reached court - six adjournments after the ban was suspended in July - and the court now wants to hear evidence of Shoaib's bad behaviour before proceeding further.

"Akhtar assured the court of good behaviour, but he violated the code again by criticising the PCB in a recent television interview," PCB lawyer Taffazul Rizvi said. "The court has demanded the full evidence on that within a week. "We have a recording of that interview." @Email:kshyam@thenational.ae