The escalation of tensions in the Middle East has raised new concerns for the government, and they have therefore directed the men’s national team to not have a long tour of Pakistan
The Bangladesh Cricket Board will continue to insist on a short tour of Pakistan, BCB President Nazmul Hassan said Sunday.
The BCB president made the announcement at Sher-e-Bangla National Stadium following a four-hour long meeting of the board.
The escalation of tensions in the Middle East has raised new concerns for the government, and they have therefore directed the men’s national team to not have a long tour of Pakistan.
Nazmul clarified that Bangladesh never had any issue with travelling to Pakistan and that this is evident as the BCB had always offered to tour Pakistan but for a three-match T20Is series, while asking to reschedule the Test series. It is now on the Pakistan Cricket Board (PCB) to determine the future of the series.
Political tension has been rising in the Middle-East following the death of Iranian major general Qasem Soleimani of the Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps earlier this month. US President Donald Trump admitted to authorizing the killing of Soleimani outside an airport in Baghdad.
“Taking a government order is regular practice ahead of any tour, and this has been the same for touring Pakistan. We shared the schedule of the full series with the agencies and their observation has been that the situation in the Middle-East is different. Considering the escalating tension in the particular region, they have advised us to hold the shortest tour possible. They have advised us to play the three T20Is within the shortest possible time, and then to go for the Test series at a different time,” Nazmul told the media.
“We are going to communicate the same thing to the PCB once we receive the letter from the government,” the BCB chief added.
Nazmul emphasized that the BCB supports international cricket getting back to in Pakistan in proper, and for that reason the board has always said they would like to play T20I series.
“It is tough to go beyond a government order. We also want to see international cricket get back to Pakistan. It is a significant development for them that national teams from Sri Lanka and West Indies have already toured the country. But, at this moment for us only a short tour is possible,” Nazmul said.
“The things that are happening in Middle-East have no certainty. We understand that a fool-proof security arrangement will be in place for us, but things are happening despite security. The best of intelligence is not being able to stop occurrences. Anything can happen at any time, but still we are fine with touring Pakistan,” he added.
The Tests in the schedule are part of the ongoing ICC Test Championship. Nazmul said the BCB is yet to determine the consequences of not playing the Tests, but there are strong reasons that cannot be overlooked.
“When the ICC Test Championship was planned, we all knew the matches were to be played at a neutral venue [UAE]. But that has changed. Now, they are hosting matches in Pakistan. We need to see if other teams such as England, Australia and others will tour Pakistan for Test Championship matches,” Nazmul said.
“I am travelling to Dubai tomorrow [Monday] for an ICC meeting and I will try to find out what is actually happening or what is to happen if these matches [Tests] are not played,” the BCB boss added.