Pakistan to fill void left by India in South Africa
Pakistan Tuesday confirmed they would make a short tour of South Africa later this month, playing three one-dayers and two Twenty 20 matches.
"The series was arranged following the shortened tour by India to South Africa," the Pakistan Cricket Board (PCB) said in a statement. The Pakistan team is expected to arrive in South Africa on November 18 and open the tour with the Twenty20 matches, in Johannesburg on November 20 and in Cape Town on November 22.
The one-day matches will be played in Cape Town (Nov 24), Port Elizabeth (Nov 27) and Centurion (Nov 30). Both teams are currently playing a five-match one-day series in the United Arab Emirates, with the third match in Abu Dhabi on Wednesday.
The series is tied at 1-1 after South Africa won the first match in Sharjah by one run while Pakistan won the second match by 66 runs in Dubai. The preceding two-Test series was drawn 1-1.
Cricket South Africa chief executive Haroon Lorgat said the upcoming tour was "fantastic news" for the Proteas and their fans. Lorgat said the tour would give the South Africans more cricket after India reduced their tour from three Tests and seven one-dayers to two Tests and three one-dayers.
"With the Indian tour having unfortunately been curtailed, we needed to give our fans the opportunity to see the Proteas in action, and I?m delighted that Pakistan accepted our offer to tour here," the PCB statement quoted him as saying.
His appointment as chief of Cricket South Africa had irked India because of a longstanding feud between him and the Indian cricket board.
"It?s not been an easy period for South African cricket, but I want to thank our fans and commercial partners for their patience and support during this time," added Lorgat.
The PCB's interim chairman Najam Sethi, restored on Monday by a Pakistani court, also expressed pleasure at the tour. "We are very happy to tour South Africa and to play against one of the best teams in the world," he said in the statement.
"The tour will be beneficial to both our boards and we are looking forward to build on our excellent relationship with Cricket South Africa."