Tour in peril

windies, pakistan fail to agree to 2013 window

Pakistan’s tour of the West Indies in 2013 is now in serious peril after the West Indies Cricket Board and the Pakistan Cricket Board failed to find a suitable window for the tour.Pakistan were originally scheduled to play two Tests, five ODIs and two Twenty20s in the Caribbean in June and July but that tour is unlikely now to go ahead as anticipated.

According to the Future Tours Programme, West Indies are scheduled to host Pakistan from the last week in June to the last week in July, but they planned a tri-series against India and Sri Lanka during that time. To avoid a clash, the WICB earlier had asked†the PCB if their tour could be rescheduled to August. The idea, however, interfered with the Pakistan’s own plan to host India and to play out the Zimbabwe series that was postponed last year.

West Indies thereafter had also scheduled their Caribbean Premier League tournament from 29 July to 26 August.

“It’s a very tricky situation here as our first priority to play according to the FTP,” Zaka Ashraf, the PCB chairman, told ESPNcricinfo. “They actually planned their tri-nation series within our window and left us with a choice to reschedule the series, however after a lengthy deliberation we failed to find a window to go ahead with it.

“Earlier there were plans to split the tour but it’s not working as we want to play a full series. West Indies is an important cricket team and we have always had cordial relations with them, and hopefully we will find another window next year.”

The PCB was hoping to host India in August this year after a successful series in India last December. However reports are that India have declined, citing player rest, while Zimbabwe responded positively.

Pakistan were scheduled to tour Zimbabwe for a series of two Tests, three ODIs and two T20s from December 2012 to January 2013 but had played the series with India instead. So, having the August window open, they offered Zimbabwe the option of playing the pending series.

Last year West Indies A team’s reciprocal tour (after 2010) to Pakistan also fell through as the regional players were reluctant to visit Pakistan which still remains a volatile destination because of the threat of terrorism.

The idea was floated to play in the UAE but due to the excessive cost of arranging a series for A teams away from home, it was scrapped by the PCB. Pakistan last visited West Indies in 2011, drawing the Test series 1-1, winning the One Day International series 3-2 and the hosts taking the only T20 International. (Cricinfo/WG)††

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