ISLAMABAD (APP) – Pakistan Cricket Board (PCB) Chairman Najam Sethi Tuesday said the sporting relations between India and Pakistan were held hostage by the Indian government by not permitting its players to play with arch rivals.
“The Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) and PCB are contracted to play. But BCCI says the Indian government has not permitted it to play Pakistan in a bilateral series but it can play Pakistan in any multilateral competition,” he said.
“There seems to be no point in inviting BCCI officials to visit Pakistan when they are not even prepared to play us in a secure third country,” Sportstar quoted him as saying.
Holding Pakistan Super League (PSL) final in Lahore had proved to be a milestone in revival of international cricket in the country, Sethi remarked.
The PCB Chairman said holding PSL final in Lahore in March paved the way for the World XI which will pave the way for Sri Lanka to play a match in October.
“Sri Lanka tour will pave the way for the West Indies to play three matches in November. We are taking it step by step. That’s our approach.”
PCB is working on two fronts for the revival of international cricket. “Ensuring foolproof security by involving international security experts with SOPs of Punjab government, and progressively holding PSL matches in Pakistan with foreign players so that windows of confidence can be created for full series in due course,” he said.
The World XI will play three Twenty20s for the Independence Cup against Pakistan at the Gaddafi Stadium in Lahore on September 12, 13 and 15.
“The three-match series between Pakistan and World XI will encourage cricket teams to tour Pakistan,” he said.
Sethi said International Cricket Council (ICC) chief Shashank Manohar will be invited to watch the ICC-Pakistan series.
Sethi said PCB is also planning to honour its past captains including Misbah ul Haq, Younis Khan and Shahid Afridi in the Annual Awards Ceremony on September 14.