FT Online

Published:
2020-01-13 12:49:00 BdST

Bangladesh to play only three T20Is in Pakistan: BCB chief


Bangladesh Cricket Board (BCB) has decided to play three T20 internationals in Pakistan and skip the two-match Test series.

BCB President Nazmul Hassan announced the decision at Sher-e-Bangla National Cricket Stadium on Sunday evening.

“We’re yet to get a full security advice from the government. But we’ve managed a brief report which suggested that we can tour Pakistan for a shorter period. So we’ve decided to play three T20Is. We don’t think we can play Test now,” he told the media.

He said the security authorities advised BCB to take into account the current situation in that particular region in Middle East and make the tour as short as possible.

“So we have decided to play T20I series only. We might play Tests after peace is restored in the region. We are going to make this offer to Pakistan Cricket Board (PCB),” Nazmul Hassan said.

Bangladesh and Pakistan were originally scheduled to play two Tests and three T20Is. But the BCB is unwilling to let its players stay for a longer period in Pakistan due to security concerns.

It had previously proposed to play the T20 series in Pakistan but PCB declined.

“We don’t know how we’ll play the Test series - whether be it one-by-one or two-match series together. The Test series might be cancelled as well. We already verbally informed PCB,” Nazmul said, replying a question about the fate of the Test series which is also a part of World Test Championship.

He explained that security concern was not the only reason behind the decision.

“We understand that the security situation can worsen at any time in any country. The important thing is the security plan that we’ve been offered,” he said.

Nazmul said Bangladesh sent women’s team and an age-level team to Pakistan. The security arrangement was good. The International Cricket Council sent their match officials to Pakistan after getting advice from their own security specialist.

“We aren’t saying that the security situation in Pakistan isn’t satisfactory. It’s really tough to say no to this tour because Sri Lanka, who were victims of a terror attack in 2009, are saying that they are happy with security. But the situation is different than it was during Sri Lanka’s latest tour,” he said.

The two-match Test of this series is a part of the World Test Championship. If Bangladesh deny the series, Pakistan might be awarded full points. But the BCB boss said they are unaware of the fact.

“We don’t know what could happen if we skip the Test series. We still need to know specifically as it’s part of an ICC competition,” Nazmul told the media.

But BCB’s latest stance puts the series in danger. Sources familiar with the development in PCB say Pakistan have not accepted the BCB’s proposal. They want the Test series to take place. The contradictory stance means that the series might be called off.

“PCB is yet to agree to BCB’s proposals. The Test series is likely to be called off if BCB decide not play the Tests,” a source in Pakistan told UNB, preferring anonymity.

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