American Indo-Pak series return

The Pakistan Cricket Board (PCB) has registered an interest in resuming Pakistan-India ODIs at offshore venues, most likely in North America. The two countries met in a bilateral series in Abu Dhabi last April; the last time they played outside their own borders before that was in Toronto in 1998, following-on from similar series in 1997 and 1996.

“Pakistan is eager to squeeze a one-day event at offshore venues. The large number of Pakistani and Indian people in North American countries demand for such events,” PCB chairman Dr. Nasim Ashraf told reporters earlier today. He added that discussions were already taking place about commencing such series, at least one per year.

Due to political tensions the two teams’ activity against each other was curtailed during the 1990s and early 2000s. Aside from the three Sahara “Friendship” Cup tournaments in Toronto, there was just a single bilateral series between January 1990 and March 2004. An improvement in diplomatic relations, however, has seen attempts by the PCB and the Board for Control of Cricket in India (BCCI) to make-up for lost time, and the pair met in each of the 20034, 20045 and 20056 seasons.

Dr. Ashraf said the BCCI had first made the offer last year but the PCB administration of the time had turned it down: “India wanted us to sign an agreement on playing events offshore but understandably some of our players wanted proper breaks between series and did not want offshore events.” Shahriyar Khan, then PCB chairman, had said he was keen to avoid overkill.

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