LAHORE:The Pakistan Cricket Board for the first time, made it clear that it will either host England in 2022 or the series will not take place.
The clear cut policy statement came from none other than its Chairman Ehsan Mani who said
Pakistan had proven to be as safe and secure as any country in the world.
“I don’t think there will be any reason for England not to come.
“I’m very clear that we won’t play in third countries. We either play in Pakistan or we won’t play, ” Mani told the prestigious BBC’s Test Match Special on Thursday. Ehsan Mani has led Pakistan’s drive for complete revival of international cricket in Pakistan by convincing Sri Lanka and Bangladesh to play Tests in the 2019-20 season. Subsequently, PCB Chief Executive Wasim Khan persuaded Marylebone Cricket Club to tour Lahore for four white-ball matches in February 2020. The icing on the cake was against all expectations, the PCB successfully staged 30 of the 34 HBL Pakistan Super League matches in Pakistan. Around 450 foreign players had expressed interest in playing in the HBL PSL 2020 with nearly 40, including 10 England players, ending up spending more than a month in Pakistan. “Pakistan is safe,” added Mani, who is a former president of the International Cricket Council.
“For some teams that have come we have had very tight security, like you would have for a head of state. By the time the MCC came, they wanted to get out and play golf. They went sightseeing, they went to restaurants. “We’ve got two years before England come and I hope by then things have settled down and there will be more freedom of movement.” England are due to play three Tests and five one-day internationals in Pakistan at the end of 2022. Speaking on Wednesday, coach Chris Silverwood said he would be open to travelling to Pakistan. “For me it’s great that it’s a topic of conversation again,” he said. “We are looking to get back there. Personally, I’d have no problem going.”