x Abu Dhabi, UAESunday 23 July 2017

ICC wants Pakistan on home soil with rivals India

The UAE may miss out on the chance to host a Pakistan versus India cricketing ties with the International Cricket Council urging countries to resume 'iconic series'.

ISLAMABAD // The UAE could miss out on the chance to host a Pakistan versus India series after the two Test nations were urged to resume tours to each others' countries by an International Cricket Council (ICC) task team yesterday.

The neighbours have not played in a bilateral series since Pakistan toured India in 2007. Political relations became strained after the militant attack at Mumbai in 2008, and India postponed its return tour to Pakistan.

The ICC's Pakistan Task Team (PTT) urged the Pakistan and India governments to seek a swift resolution to enable "this great iconic series to resume".

Pakistan are scheduled to tour India next year, and in the Future Tour Programme for 2012 to 2020 the ICC has scheduled at least three series between the teams.

The UAE has become an adopted home for Pakistan in recent years and who will play a series against Sri Lanka starting in mid-October.

Pakistan are then set to meet England in Abu Dhabi and Dubai in a series of limited-overs matches early next year. However, it appears the ICC's preference is for the country to resume hosting series on home soil.

The PTT was formed in 2009 to ensure Pakistan retained and developed international cricket after the attack in Lahore on the Sri Lanka team bus ended all major visits, and prevented Pakistan from co-hosting this year's World Cup.

Pakistan hosted five "home" series in the UAE and England, and also played against Sri Lanka in Sri Lanka in July 2009 which was supposed to be Pakistan's home series.

The PTT's 38-page report, presented to the ICC conference in Hong Kong last week, also regarded the appointment of the Pakistan Cricket Board (PCB) chairman by the country's president as highly unusual, and wants an end to the government's undue interference in the PCB.