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Lord's new Pakistani home?

2009-03-04 06:52

Sydney - The "home" of cricket at Lord's, Edgbaston and Headingley could be possible venues for Australia's future Test series against Pakistan after the British government offered to act as a temporary host to the Pakistan team.

Britain's sports minister Gerry Sutcliffe made the offer to Pakistani officials on Tuesday after attacks on the visiting Sri Lankan team in Lahore effectively ended their chances of hosting matches in the foreseeable future.

Australia postponed their last tour of Pakistan, scheduled for 2008, until 2010 because of safety concerns.

There is no real hope of the Australians travelling to Pakistan in the near future but they have expressed their interest in playing the series at a neutral venue, with discussions turning to England.

"Pakistan has started the discussion about playing three Test matches at neutral venues in England in 2010," Cricket Australia spokesperson Peter Young told reporters on Wednesday.

"It's a work in progress, the PCB (Pakistan Cricket Board) is responsible for coming up with the arrangements, but in principle we've been comfortable and talking with them."

Any rescheduled matches in England would avoid clashes with the southern hemisphere's busy summer season and Young said there was also the bonus of both countries having large supporter groups in England.

"One of the downsides to neutral venues is quite often you don't get people turning up at the stadium because wherever you are, the locals don't have a home-team interest," Young said.

"But part of the theory is that there are a significant number of expatriate Pakistanis who, with appropriate marketing, might be encouraged to attend these games.

"Pakistan would still have kind-of a de facto home crowd advantage."

Reuters

Comments
  • Rob. - 2009-03-04 07:53

    The people of Pakistani origin in the UK should offer to host folk from their home country accomodation for lets say two weeks and the airways offer reduced fares so that they could get even better support. This will show the world what a great family the cricket people of this world are. Rob N.

  • Anonymous User - 2009-03-04 08:31

    In the dark days of Apartheid no one offered the SA team a home -they individually were not directly responsible for their govt / peoples actions.Whats the difference? If the world declares this behaviour unacceptable why should recognition be given. The same for Zimbabwe

  • Anonymous User - 2009-03-04 09:20

    I think the British Government is inviting trouble to their shores by taking on the Pakistan cricket team. What a perfect chance for these terrorists to act against the West. I believe the sporting links should be cut off until the political stability is entrenched in the region.

  • Anonymous User - 2009-03-04 09:28

    The difference is that Apartheid and the Zimbabwe crisis are because of government actions. The attacks that happened in Pakistan were not government sanctioned but were orchestrated by fringe groups trying to destabilise that country.

  • Anonymous User - 2009-03-04 09:34

    Anonymous 8.31am - The difference is that this is the action of terrorists, NOT the Pakistani govt or people. In fact the Pakistani govt as condemned these acts. Apartheid on the other hand was government policy. As is what is happening in Zimbabwe.

  • Matt - 2009-03-04 09:48

    What a great idea, SA should take note, SA cricket is always saying it wants to take cricket to more of the country, heere is a perfect chance, Pak vs Aus in Potch, Kimberly and PE etc, grow our local game in areas starved of high profile games!

  • Anonymous User - 2009-03-04 13:14

    Pakistan should be banned from international cricket until the government and country gets their act together. They need to be taught a lesson. SA was banned due to apartheid (which was a good thing) so the same must apply to other coountries especially those that house terrorists.

  • umair - 2009-03-28 13:34

    the world of cricket is getting into a lot of politics as a pakistani i condem the attacks that heppened on the srilankan cricket team it was once off attempt but these kind of attacks will not take place again in pakistan. the people who are responsible for these attacks have no home land, no religion they are brain washed and will go to hell for such acts. pakistan is a great country and all the cricket playing nations should support them rather then not to travel. i hope cricket comes back to pakistan because cricket is our life and pakistan have produced alot of legends like imran khan, inzi, wasim s.anwar and waqar younis. pakistan should not be isolated from cricket.PAKISTAN ZINDA ABAD.... LONG LIVE PAKISTAN

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