September 14, 2019: Pakistan Cricket Board turned down the rumors of shifting the venue for the upcoming Sri Lanka series despite security concerns.
Shifting The Series To A Neutral Venue is Out Of The Question: PCB
Pakistan cricket board has stated that the Sri Lanka series would carry on as it was planned, and they were not thinking about shifting the series to a neutral venue.
Sri Lanka is scheduled to play three T20Is and the same number of ODIs in Lahore and Karachi respectively. Sri Lanka will arrive on September 25 and return on October 10.
All was going in favor of Pakistan before Sri Lanka’s prime minister office received the information of a possible terrorist threat on visitors from a reliable source. Sri Lanka cricket board was advised to take ‘extreme care’ of the players touring Pakistan. After the information passed to Sri Lanka cricket board, they sought the help of the Sri Lankan government to reassess the security situation in Pakistan.
Ten Sri Lankan players, including Dimuth Karunaratne and Lasith Malinga, there ODI and T20I skippers, refused to tour Pakistan over security concerns.
Lahiru Thirimanne and Dasun Shanaka were given the responsibility to lead Sri Lanka in ODIs and T20Is respectively.
Sharjah cricket stadium authorities offered Pakistan to host Sri Lanka series there, but Pakistan cricket board denied the offer saying that shifting the Sri Lanka series to a neutral venue was out of the question.
Shifting The Series To A Neutral Venue Can Hurt Our Cause: PCB
Pakistan cricket board (PCB) stated that they wanted to bring international cricket back to Pakistan permanently. Shifting the series to a neutral venue could hurt their cause. It would discourage the foreign players from visiting Pakistan during Pakistan Super League (PSL) 2020 which was scheduled to hold in Pakistan entirely.
According to Cricketpakistan.com.pk, PCB is closely monitoring the security situations in Pakistan, and they are committed to providing the best security to the visiting Sri Lanka side.
International cricket was put on hold in Pakistan, when gunmen attacked the touring Sri Lankan team, on their way to Gaddafi Stadium Lahore, on March 2009. Six Sri Lankan players were injured including two officials Pakistan.