Pakistan Foreign Minister Shah Mehmood Qureshi feels India have put pressure on Bangladesh to not tour Pakistan for two Tests and three T20Is scheduled in January-February. Pakistan is trying hard to see international cricket return on its soil after it remained sidelined for a long time after the terror attack that targeted the Sri Lankan national side in Lahore in 2009.
However, the same Lankans agreed to send its team to Pakistan on two occasions to play a couple of limited-over series and Tests and after it went off successfully, the hosts have become more confident of playing home series in their actual den and not the United Arab Emirates.
However, despite Sri Lanka’s successful series, the Bangladesh Cricket Board (BCB) has expressed reservations over touring Pakistan for Tests and urged the Pakistan Cricket Board (PCB) to shift the matches to a neutral venue. But the PCB has remained firm on its stand to host the matches in Pakistan.
Players’ families not willing to see them go to Pakistan, says BCB
In a recent development, BCB President Nazmul Hasan Papon said most of Bangladesh’s frontline cricketers have shown an unwillingness to go to Pakistan as their families have expressed concerns.
“If the players and the staff are willing and we can manage to form a good team, then we will send our team. Some of our star players have said that they don’t even want to play the T20s. Informing that the whole proceeding depends on having green signal from the government,” Hasan said.
“We are awaiting government clearances. We have already gotten approval from one section and awaiting other instructions. We need clearance from the security agencies. One thing is certain, we won’t force any player to go. Many of the coaching staff has already informed us that they don’t want to go. Some of them have said that they do want to go but only for a short period; only a handful though wanted that as most of the foreign staff do not want to go,” he said, adding that the families of many of the players were not willing to see them traveling to Pakistan.
The Pakistan minister, who is known for his strong anti-Indian stands, put the blame on India for Bangladesh’s reservation.
“Bangladesh has refused to come to Pakistan under Indian pressure,” the leader of Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf of Prime Minister Imran Khan was quoted as saying by livehindustan.com.
Bangladesh have last toured Pakistan for a Test series in 2003.
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