PAK vs NZ: The first of the three-match ODI series was scheduled to be played today. However, as per the latest developments, New Zealand’s entire tour of Pakistan has been cancelled. According to reports, due to an escalation in the New Zealand Government threat levels for Pakistan, and advice from NZC security advisors on the ground, it was decided New Zealand will not play a single game of the tour. Add to that, arrangements have been made for the team’s departure as well.
“The side was to play Pakistan this evening in the first of three ODIs in Rawalpindi, before moving to Lahore for a five-match T20 series. However, following an escalation in the New Zealand Government threat levels for Pakistan, and advice from NZC security advisors on the ground, it has been decided the BLACKCAPS will not continue with the tour. Arrangements are now being made for the team’s departure.”
Earlier, Pakistan’s Prime Minister, Imran Khan also talked to New Zealand’s counterpart, assuring her of the complete safety of all the players. Imran Khan assured that they have the best intelligence systems in the world and no security threat of any kind exists for New Zealand. However, New Zealand was adamant and decided to withdraw from the tour.
“Earlier today, New Zealand Cricket informed us they had been alerted to some security alert and have unilaterally decided to postpone the series. Pakistan Cricket Board and Pakistan Government made foolproof security arrangements for all visiting teams. We have assured the New Zealand Cricket of the same. The Pakistan Prime Minister spoke personally to the Prime Minister of New Zealand and informed her that we have one of the best intelligence systems in the world and that no security threat of any kind exists for the visiting team,” Pakistan Cricket Board (PCB) clarified in a statement.
“The security officials with the New Zealand team have been satisfied with security arrangements made by the Pakistan Government throughout their stay here,” PCB added.
As per reports, the Black Caps squad did not arrive at Rawalpindi Cricket Stadium due to the Covid-19 scare. NZC chief executive David White asserted that it was not possible for them to continue with the series due to the advice of the New Zealand Government.
The PAK vs NZ series, comprising three ODIs and five T20Is, was set to commence today and run till October 3. However, with the tour now abandoned, the New Zealand contingency is now preparing for departure.