Karachi: Six years after a terrorist attack forced Sri Lanka to abandon their tour of Pakistan, the PCB has decided to invite them for a bilateral series. This was announced by newly-reinstated Chairman of the Board, Najam Sethi, in a press conference here.
Sethi said the decision to send the invitation had been made after Sri Lankan President Mahinda Rajapakse agreed to send the team during a meeting with his Pakistani counterpart Mamnoon Hussain on the sidelines of a summit in China.
"The words of the Sri Lankan President are a big boost for us and we feel this is the best time to test the waters," Sethi said. He said an official invitation would be sent to the Sri Lankan board in a bid to break the ice of Test teams not touring Pakistan since 2009. "We are hoping for a positive response from the Sri Lankan board who have always supported us" he said.
In 2009, terrorists had attacked the Sri Lankan team in Lahore during which six Pakistani policemen and a van driver were killed. The incident eventually led to the isolation of Pakistan as an international cricket host. "We are ready to host them, we will inform them about the gap in our cricket commitments and want to use this opportunity," said Sethi.
Ever since Test teams stopped touring Pakistan, the PCB has had to host series in the United Arab Emirates and this year also two "home" series are scheduled against Australia and New Zealand in winter in the UAE. Pakistan are also due to tour Sri Lanka in August for an unscheduled tour.