Australia to play Pakistan in UAE
Australia will play Pakistan in five one-day matches and a Twenty20 game in the United Arab Emirates immediately after their current tour of South Africa, it was confirmed today.
Ijaz Butt, chairman of the Pakistan Cricket Board, made the announcement following discussions with his counterparts at Cricket Australia.
The two parties had met following an International Cricket Council meeting in Perth last month to finalise the details of the tour, which had to be rescheduled after Australia refused to travel to Pakistan last year because of security concerns.
Those concerns still apparently exist with the rescheduled tour to be played at neutral venues in Dubai and Abu Dhabi from April 22 to May 7.
“On the request of Cricket Australia (CA) we have rescheduled the series,” Butt said.
Butt revealed Australia would fly directly to Dubai from Johannesburg, where they will play the fifth one-day international against South Africa on April 17.
The first two games of the Pakistan series will be held at the Sports City Cricket Stadium in Dubai, before moving to the Sheikh Zayed Stadium in Abu Dhabi.
Australia still also have to reschedule their Test series against Pakistan, with CA promising to play the series later this year.
Butt admitted it is likely that this series will also be played at neutral venues.
Australia have not toured Pakistan since 1998. In 2002 a three-Test series between the nations was moved to Colombo and Sharjah because of Australia’s security worries.
The Australians were also one of a number of governing bodies to voice their security concerns ahead of last year’s proposed ICC Champions Trophy in Pakistan, which was postponed a month before it was due to begin.
Earlier this year the ICC announced they would not hold the Champions Trophy in Pakistan because of the security concerns of its members and are now exploring alternate venues.
April 22: 1st ODI, Sports City Cricket Stadium, Dubai
April 24: 2nd ODI, Sports City Cricket Stadium, Dubai
April 27: 3rd ODI, Sheikh Zayed Stadium, Abu Dhabi
May 1: 4th ODI, Sheikh Zayed Stadium, Abu Dhabi
May 3: 5th ODI, Sheikh Zayed Stadium, Abu Dhabi
May 7: Twenty20 international, Sports City Cricket Stadium, Dubai