England considering invitation to tour Pakistan in early 2021

England considering invitation to tour Pakistan in early 2021

European Central Bank confirms that it has received an invitation from Pakistan and will consider on various aspects before reaching a final decision.

It would mark England's first tour to Pakistan since 2005.

Test teams have avoided playing in Pakistan since 2009 when terrorists attacked the Sri Lankan team bus in Lahore.

"After discussions with the Pakistan Cricket Board, we can confirm the England and Wales Cricket Board has received an invitation in respect of a short white-ball tour to Pakistan during the early part of 2021", said the European Central Bank.

Former Pakistan Cricket captain Wasim Akram said on Friday England's consideration for a short tour to Pakistan was a major cricket breakthrough for the cricket-mad nation that will have long-term effects on the growth and development of local cricketers that, in turn, will improve worldwide standing of the national sides across all formats.

England are scheduled to travel to India in January for a full Test and limited-overs tour.

"When we took the decision of sending the team to England we were anxious because of the COVID-19 and bio-security bubble situations and some people also voiced their concerns that might be putting our players into a health risk", Khan conceded.

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However, Wasim insisted that this is not reciprocal to Pakistan's summer tour to England in the middle of COVID-19 pandemic.

For the proposed tour, European Central Bank have listed Covid-19 bio-secure bubbles, overall security in the country and an already busy schedule of the England cricket team as the primary challenges, but said no final decision has been taken yet.

The ECB later confirmed the invite, saying they were committed in doing what they could to help this develop further.

"The process started 12 months ago with Tom Harrison's visit to Lahore during Sri Lanka matches and following regular interactions with the PCB and other relevant stakeholders, they finally acknowledged they were considering a short tour to Pakistan", Wasim, who took 916 worldwide wickets, told APP.

In August this year, Pakistan toured England to play a three-match Test series and as many T20Is.

But in the last two years the ice has been broken with Sri Lanka and Bangladesh coming last season to play Test matches and white-ball cricket as well.

Khan also confirmed that a security inspection team of Cricket South Africa will visit Pakistan in November to see the arrangements being put in place for their team's next year's scheduled tour to Pakistan.

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