No headway in tour planStaff Correspondent
Bangladesh’s hotly-debated plan for a Pakistan tour in late April has yet to gain any momentum with the International Cricket Council saying the hosts have yet to submit a security plan.
Bangladesh has repeatedly said the tour is subject to a clearance from the ICC as it has to provide the match officials for the April 29 one-day international and the Twenty20 International the following day at the Gaddafi Stadium in Lahore.
The ICC had requested the PCB to provide them a comprehensive security plan for consideration immediately after they were informed about the planned visit during a board meeting on April 15.
The ICC’s Anti-Corruption and Security Unit was to commission a localised risk assessment to determine whether its officials and staff are appropriately protected by the proposed security plan.
Asked if they have already received the security plan, ICC’s spokesman Colin Gibson told New Age on Wednesday that so far nothing has reached their Dubai office.
Though the Pakistan Cricket Board has not yet submitted any security plan to the ICC, it was enthusiastic enough to send a draft of Memorandum of Understanding to the Bangladesh Cricket Board on Wednesday.
BCB’s cricket operations chief Enayet Hossain Siraj admitted to have received the MOU, but said they will not sign it until the ICC gives the security clearance.
‘We all are looking forward to the ICC decision. Until they say the place is safe for the visit of the match officials, there is no question of signing the MOU,’ said Siraj, whose committee a day earlier unanimously recommended to the BCB not to proceed with the tour.
Siraj added that they have not asked the national selectors yet to think of a squad as nothing has been finalised.
With barely 10 days to go for the planned visit, BCB’s acting chief executive officer Nizamuddin Chowdhury, however, is confident that they can still provide all the logistic support needed for the visit.
‘I don’t think completing the visa formalities of the players and getting the air tickets booked will take too much time. We have enough time in our hand to provide these logistic supports,’ he said.
PCB chairman Zaka Ashraf told a news agency on Wednesday that Bangladesh will land in Pakistan on April 27 means the BCB has just a little over a week to complete all the formalities after getting the ICC clearance.
Ashraf said once the comprehensive security plan is approved by the federal government it will be forwarded to the ICC, though reports coming from Pakistan suggested otherwise.
The PCB has yet to receive any positive response from the Punjab provincial government, run by the opposition Muslim League party, which according to report, is the reason for their delay in finalising the security plan.
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