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Pakistan vs Sri Lanka: ICC to name officials for the tour only after conducting a security review in the country

Recently, the Sri Lankan government had warned their cricket board of a possible terrorist attack on the team in Pakistan, something that the PCB refuted vehemently.

National Cricket Stadium in Karachi Pakistan
A view of the National Cricket Stadium in Karachi. (Photo by ASIF HASSAN/AFP/Getty Images)

Pakistan versus Sri Lanka limited-overs series is scheduled to begin from September 27, but it seems that the troubles are just not ending for the Pakistan Cricket Board, who are trying their hardest to convince Sri Lanka of the security measures for their tour. Already ten of the star Lankan players have pulled out due to concern, leading to SLC naming less experienced squad.

The 3 ODIs and 3 T20Is will be played in Lahore and Karachi respectively and the International Cricket Council (ICC) is yet to name the officials for the matches. The bad rap that Pakistan has due to the 2009 terrorist attack on Sri Lanka team bus still brings horror to the players from the emerald island. A handful of Lankan players have played in Pakistan as part of the World XI and in PSL, but international cricket has not returned in full flow in the country.

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ICC to conduct security review before naming officials for PAK v SL series

According to a Pakistan Urdu daily ‘Daily Jang’, ICC will be conducting a comprehensive security review of Pakistan Cricket Board’s claims and analyze the security plans to be put in place by them before naming the neutral umpires and match referees for the six limited-overs matches. PCB is also aiming to showcase their security in order to persuade ICC and Sri Lanka to play the three Tests in Pakistan only.

Recently, the Sri Lankan government had warned their cricket board of a possible terrorist attack on the team in Pakistan, something that the PCB refuted vehemently. Following this, the SLC said that they need to “reassess” their plan for the Pakistan tour. The last time an international series was played in Pakistan, against Zimbabwe in 2015, the ICC had not named any neutral officials and tasked the two countries to oversee the tour.

It remains to be seen if the cricket’s international governing body follows the same model and let the Pakistan Cricket Board (PCB) and Sri Lanka Cricket (SLC) pick officials from their own setups or endorse the security setup by PCB by sending neutral umpires for the series. The home board has made it clear that the series, which will begin from Sept 27- Oct 9, will not be shifted to a neutral venue.

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