Cricket: England return to Pakistan for short T20 series

Cricket: England return to Pakistan for short T20 series

Britain Cricket England Pakistan
Pakistan's Asad Shafiq, right, bats during the fifth day of the third cricket Test match between England and Pakistan, at the Ageas Bowl in Southampton, England, Tuesday, Aug 25, 2020. (Photo: Mike Hewitt/Pool via AP)

LONDON: England will visit Pakistan for the first time in 16 years when they play two T20 Internationals in October 2021, the England and Wales Cricket Board (ECB) announced on Wednesday (Nov 18).

The short tour will serve as a build-up to the Twenty20 World Cup in India that is scheduled to start the same month, and comes as international cricket returns to Pakistan following a deadly terrorist attack on the Sri Lanka team bus in 2009 that killed six policemen and two civilians.

The matches are scheduled for Oct 14 and 15, both in Karachi.

"This will be the first time since 2005 that an England team has toured Pakistan and as such it represents a significant moment for both nations," ECB Chief Executive Officer Tom Harrison said.

"As always, the safety and welfare of our players and staff will be paramount. We are working closely with the PCB to ensure all the necessary plans are in place, especially concerning the anticipated levels of security around the team, the proposed travel protocols and of course the situation regarding the fast-moving and ever-changing COVID-19 pandemic."

Pakistan have hosted Sri Lanka and Bangladesh for tests, and Zimbabwe for limited overs matches since December 2019, having used Sharjah, Dubai and Abu Dhabi as home venues since the bus attack.

Source: Reuters/kv