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Ten Sri Lankan Players Refused To Tour Pakistan Over Security Concerns

September 9, 2019: Sri Lanka’s Test and ODI skipper Dimuth Karunaratne, T20I captain Lasith Malinga and seasoned campaigner Angelo Mathews have refused to tour Pakistan due to security concerns.

Sri Lanka Tour Of Pakistan 2019

Sri Lanka is scheduled to tour Pakistan for a complete limited-overs series after a decade. They will play three T20Is and three ODIs in Lahore and Karachi respectively. The tour will kick start from September 25 and end on October 9. No top tier team has toured Pakistan since the terrorist attack on Sri Lankan cricket team bus in Lahore, back in 2009. Early on, Sri Lankan all-rounder Thisara Perera and wicket-keeper batsman Niroshan Dickwella refused to tour Pakistan and asked for the NOC from the cricket board to participate in Caribbean Premier League (CPL). Now, Sri Lanka’s Test and ODI skipper Dimuth Karunaratne, T20I Captain Lasith Malinga and the most seasoned campaigner in current Sri Lanka squad, Angelo Mathews have refused to tour Pakistan due to security concerns.  Kusal Perera, D De Silva, A Dhananjaya, S Lakmal, D Chandimal also have opted out of the tour.
According to the reports, their families do not feel comfortable with the current security situation in Pakistan. Although the conditions in Pakistan are a lot better now as Pakistan Cricket Board (PCB) has hosted some matches of  Pakistan Super League in the country. They have hosted West Indies, Zimbabwe, ICC World XI, and Sri Lanka for a short tour in the past as well.

Ten Senior Sri Lankan Players Refused To Tour Pakistan

The refusal of the ten Sri Lankan cricketers has left Pakistan Cricket Board (PCB) worried. Though they have not made any official statement regarding the unavailability of senior Sri Lankan players. Pakistan Cricket Board (PCB) officials said that they were in touch with Sri Lanka’s sports minister Harin Fernando. The officials further added,” Technically, it is an internal matter of Sri Lanka Cricket Board (SLC), so we can’t comment on it. The bottom line is the Sri Lanka tour Of Pakistan is on from September 25, and we are making all the preparations to host them in Karachi and Lahore.” Sources said,” Pakistan will accept whatever team Sri Lanka cricket board sends for three ODIs and three T20Is.”
Sri Lanka’s sports minister Harin Fernando has called 30 Sri Lankan players for a meeting on Monday (September 9, 2019) to brief them about the security situations in Pakistan. He also said that he would be touring Pakistan with the Sri Lanka cricket team from September 25 to October 9.
Sri Lanka cricket board and their sports minister are trying their level best to convince the players to tour Pakistan but, the players will make the final decision, and none can force them to visit Pakistan if they are not willing to.
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