Sri Lanka’s upcoming tour of Pakistan is in jeopardy after their government is said to have received news of a “possible terrorist threat on the Sri Lanka team”. The Islanders were set to leave for Pakistan in less than a fortnight for the limited-overs tour. Sri Lanka are set to play three T20Is and as many ODIs in Pakistan.
However, the tour is now in doubt as Pakistan await “reassessment of the security situation in Pakistan”. Sri Lanka Cricket had previously done a security assessment and were pretty much satisfied with the arrangements in place. But the latest turn of events have alerted them and another security check is looking like the only option.
As many as ten Sri Lanka stars have already pulled out of the tour due to security reasons. Niroshan Dickwella, Kusal Perera, Dhananjaya de Silva, Thisara Perera, Akila Dananjaya, Lasith Malinga, Angelo Mathews, Suranga Lakmal, Dinesh Chandimal and Dimuth Karunaratne have pulled out of the tour.
The recent development can very much force other players also to pull out of the tour. Sri Lanka Cricket, on Wednesday, confirmed that the Prime Minister has received reliable information of a possible terrorist threat on the Sri Lankan team while touring Pakistan.
“Sri Lanka Cricket today sought the assistance of the Sri Lankan government to conduct a ‘reassessment’ of the security situation in Pakistan ahead of the national team’s planned tour to Pakistan,” a board release said.
“The decision was taken following a warning SLC received from the Prime Minister’s office, sent via the Ministry of Telecommunication, Foreign Employment and Sports. The warning highlights that the Prime Minister’s Office has received reliable information of a possible terrorist threat on the Sri Lankan team, while touring Pakistan,” it added.
When it comes to touring Pakistan, Sri Lanka have very bad memories of the same. It was their team bus that came under a terrorist attack in 2009 while the players were travelling to the stadium for a Test. Fortunately, the attack did not lead to any casualty although several players were severely injured.
After the incident, Pakistan was stripped of hosting rights for international cricket. Hence, they had to shift their base to UAE. Sri Lanka, meanwhile, had visited Pakistan in 2017 for a solitary T20I.
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