PCB confident of hosting Australia next year despite COVID concerns
In a positive piece of news, Pakistan Cricket Board (PCB) Chief Operating Officer (COO) Salman Naseer has confirmed that Australia’s tour of Pakistan won’t be affected by the cancellation of the ODI series between Pakistan and West Indies. The three-match ODI series between Pakistan and West Indies was postponed to June due to rising COVID-19 cases in the West Indies camp. The boards mutually decided to reschedule the ODI series for June next.
Australia are set to tour Pakistan in March 2022 for six white-ball matches. Ahead of the series, Cricket Australia (CA) delegation team had visited Pakistan to see the security arrangements in place. Salman said the delegation was satisfied with the security arrangement and gave thumbs up to the series. Addressing the COVID-19 concerns and safety of bio-bubble, Salman said both PCB and CA will sit together to finalize the COVID-19 protocols.
“There should be absolutely no impact on Australia’s Pakistan tour,” Salman told a news conference here at the National Stadium.
“Their security experts arrived here and saw everything which was in place for the West Indies series and I hope they returned satisfied. As far as bio-secure matters are concerned, both the cricket boards will sit together to decide the protocols before the series,” Salman said.
Meanwhile, the PCB COO revealed said that the ODI series between Pakistan and West Indies will be played in the first two weeks of June. Salman said the series was rescheduled keeping the well being of the West Indies players in mind.
As many as eight members of the West Indies contingent tested positive for COVID-19 in the last three days which forced the postponement of the ODI series. Salman revealed that West Indies will return to Pakistan for a short three-match T20I series to cover up the losses.
“They are satisfied with the arrangements we made for the series and that is why they have agreed to return and complete the series. As regards financial loss, we have requested them to come again for a three-T20 series and hopefully, it will be finalized soon,” Salman said.