Posts Tagged ‘Pakistan’

Pakistan invites West Indies for Tests in November

September 13, 2008

Pakistan have “formally invited” West Indies to play two Tests in November in another attempt to fill the gap created by the postponement of the Champions Trophy.

The Pakistan board had initially proposed a tri-series in South Africa but the plan fell through after Cricket South Africa said their players were fatigued following a long tour of England. They then tried to set up an ODI series against Sri Lanka but had received “ridiculously low figures” for the television rights.

Pakistan have been deprived of Test cricket in 2008 after Australia postponed their tour of the country for Test and ODI series, scheduled for March, because of security concerns. They hosted the Asia Cup in June-July, but the Champions Trophy, which was supposed to begin on September 12, was also postponed after five countries said they wouldn’t participate in the tournament due to security fears.

Their next international assignment is a four-day Twenty20 quadrangular in Toronto next month with Sri Lanka, West Indies and hosts Canada.

– About Cricket –

Sandesh Kumar Jaggi

South Africa reject tri-series proposal

September 7, 2008

South Africa reject tri-series proposal

With South Africa pulling out of the possible tri-series, Pakistan are now looking to organise a one-day series with Sri Lanka

The proposal for a tri-series in South Africa, also involving Pakistan and probably Sri Lanka has been rejected by Cricket South Africa, who said their top players need to rest after the recent tour of England.

“Cricket South Africa [CSA] have today informed us they can’t arrange the series as their players have had a long and hectic tour of England which ended on a disappointing note for them,” Shafqat Naghmi, the Pakistan board’s chief operating officer, said. Naghmi was also told by a CSA official that “South Africa’s leading players were not interested in playing in a series immediately after their tour of England”.

South Africa’s coach Mickey Arthur had expressed concerns that fatigue was hampering his team’s progress after their 4-0 loss to England in the recent one-day series and warned the administrators against “flogging a dead horse”.

The PCB was trying to arrange the tournament to fill the gap created by the postponement of the Champions Trophy which was scheduled to be held in Pakistan in September. However, five of the participating nations said they would not travel to Pakistan because of security concerns, forcing the tournament to be put off.

“We have the option of inviting one or two teams for one-day matches but will only go ahead with them after getting a clearance from the Interior Ministry,” Naghmi told .

Pakistan are now trying to set up a one-day series against Sri Lanka.

– About Cricket –

Sandesh Kumar Jaggi

Champions Trophy postponed until October 2009

August 24, 2008

The ICC has postponed the Champions Trophy, which was due to begin in Pakistan in 19 days’ time, to October 2009, after five of the eight participating nations confirmed during a teleconference on Sunday that they would not send their teams for the event due to security concerns.

South Africa had on Saturday pulled out of the tournament, which was originally scheduled to be held from Sept 12-28 in Karachi and Lahore, and the ICC was informed on Sunday that Australia, England, New Zealand and West Indies, too, would not be participating.

The ICC will now meet in September to finalise a window for the tournament in 2009 and, while Pakistan will be given “first preference” to host it, a decision on the venue may be taken only after a security assessment of the country is done around February, after the India tour.

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Sources who attended the ICC’s teleconference said there was the option of the tournament being relocated to Sri Lanka, the official alternate venue, but India and Pakistan remained adamant against a change.

India, the sources said, were not willing to sacrifice Pakistan. The Sri Lankans too didn’t press their case, as they supported the Pakistan view that a venue change could not be made on security grounds. The meeting was held in an amicable atmosphere because most of the issues had been thrashed out among the members beforehand, rendering the final discussions a mere formality.

– About Cricket –

Sandesh Kumar Jaggi

Champions Trophy to proceed as planned earlier

August 19, 2008

Doubts lingered over the fate of the Champions Trophy with the Australian Cricketers’ Association telling its members not to travel to Pakistan even as the ICC said the tournament would proceed as planned.

While Haroon Lorgat, the ICC chief executive was confirming in London that the tournament would stay in Pakistan, and saying it was up to the individual boards to decide on participation, Paul Marsh, the chief executive of the ACA, said he didn’t believe it was safe.

“The ACA has discussed the situation with its executive and our position is we can’t recommend to our players they should tour Pakistan for the Champions Trophy,” Marsh told the Australian. “We feel for the Pakistan Cricket Board and the people of Pakistan but it is the job of the ACA to make recommendations to our members based on whether it is safe to tour. Unfortunately in this case we don’t believe it is safe.”

“We have not heard anything officially from Cricket Australia and until we do we are not in a position to make any comment,” an ICC spokesman said.

The news from Australia came shortly after Lorgat addressed a press conference in London and said safety and security in Pakistan was “satisfactory” and the tournament would proceed as planned next month.

He was speaking after a meeting with the ECB as part of the ICC task force that has been travelling around the world. On Sunday the group met with the England players and their representatives in Edinburgh and now the ECB has received a detailed briefing, following similar discussions in Australia and New Zealand led by David Richardson, the ICC’s general manager of cricket.

The ECB held a board meeting on Tuesday afternoon, at which they were expected to come to a decision on their participation in the tournament after consultation with other boards around the world

“What we have done is to very clearly outline to each of these stakeholders the plan that we have in place for the Champions Trophy in Pakistan,” Lorgat said. “Understandably there are safety concerns and that’s what we are engaged in and we are dealing with.

“The ECB has received a briefing from us and have gone into a board meeting. They will consider our briefing among other reports that they may have on whether they will participate or not. But that is a decision for the ECB, as far as the ICC are concerned the safety and security is satisfactory for hosting the tournament in Pakistan.”

However, while admitting that the final decision on participation lay in the hands of the ECB, Cricket Australia, New Zealand Cricket and Cricket South Africa – whom Lorgat will meet later in the week – he refused to rule out ICC sanctions for countries that didn’t take part or send weakened teams.

Recent political developments in Pakistan, with Pervez Musharraf resigning as president, continue to present an uncertain landscape, but Lorgat said that as far as the Champions Trophy is concerned nothing has changed in the last 24 hours.

The Champions Trophy is due to start on September 12 after it was pushed back a day following concerns of starting on the anniversary of 9/11. The tournament has already been reduced to a two-venue event after construction work at Rawalpindi failed to be finished on time. All the matches will now be staged in Lahore and Karachi, but the future of the entire tournament is still far from certain.

– About Cricket –

Sandesh Kumar

Asif’s B sample tested positive

August 19, 2008

Mohammad Asif faces a ban after his B sample taken during the IPL also tested positive for a banned substance

The B sample of Mohammad Asif, the Pakistan fast bowler, taken during the Indian Premier League has tested positive for nandrolone, a banned substance. Last month the IPL had revealed that Asif had tested positive in random testing conducted during the tournament. Asif, who played for the Delhi Daredevils, had asked for his B sample to be analysed.

Asif, who faces a possible two-year ban, and his lawyer have questioned the discrepancy in the readings of the two samples. The second sample had a nandrolone concentration of 5.4 nanograms per millilitre of urine while the first had 6.2 nanograms. According to WADA (World Anti-Doping Agency) regulations, upto two nanograms per millilitre is permissible.

Asif had been suspended by the PCB from all forms of the game pending the result of the IPL inquiry. Lalit Modi, the IPL commissioner, had previously told that if Asif’s B sample also tests positive, the matter will be taken up by the IPL’s drugs tribunal, comprising Sunil Gavaskar, Dr Ravi Bapat (ex-vice chancellor of Maharashtra University of Health Sciences) and lawyer Shirish Gupte. The tribunal will take a decision in accordance with the ICC’s anti-doping code, which the IPL had adopted.

Besides testing positive during the IPL, Asif is also embroiled in another mess, having been detained at Dubai airport in June for allegedly possessing drugs. He was released by authorities after 19 days in detention, but an internal inquiry by the Pakistan board had reportedly found the evidence to be “pretty conclusive” against the player, and had recommended a ban.

The fast bowler previously tested positive for nandrolone, the banned anabolic steroid, along with Shoaib Akhtar, just before the 2006 Champions Trophy in India. Though he was banned for one year by a PCB tribunal, the punishment was overturned a month later on appeal.

– About Cricket –

Sandesh Kumar