As he prepares for a visit to India that is scheduled for October 3, Pakistan Cricket Board (PCB) Chairman Shaharyar Khan is hopeful of improvement in Pakistan-India cricketing ties.
Shaharyar, who has taken up the mantle of PCB chief for the second time in his career, is hoping for positive outcomes from his planned meeting with his Indian counterpart N Sirinavasan. The two chairmen are expected to discuss the participation of Pakistani players in the Indian Premier League (IPL).
Pakistani players took part in the inaugural IPL tournament, with Sohail Tanvir crowned the best bowler as he helped underdogs Rajasthan Royals to the championship. Shahid Afridi, Shoaib Malik, Kamran Akmal and Shoaib Akhtar were some of the other players who participated in the tournament.
“There are lot of things on my agenda, and Pakistani players’ participation in the IPL is one of them,” Khan told The Express Tribune. “Pakistan-India cricketing relations are important and they will get better over a period of time.”
However, the PCB chairman realises that change will be slow. “It will not change overnight but positive results will emerge with time,” he said. “I’m optimistic and hopeful that our players will be able to participate in the IPL in the future.”
Shaharyar enjoys a good reputation in India due to his diplomatic approach and expectations of him being able to convince the Indian team to visit Pakistan in one of their scheduled series are high.
Pakistan is expected to host India in December 2015 at the UAE. However, Shaharyar was quick to dampen these expectations. “Honestly speaking, I feel that the 2015 series will be played on a neutral venue,” he said. “Talks of a bilateral series have been going smoothly but it will be too early to expect India to come and play in Pakistan.”
Published in The Express Tribune, October 1st, 2014.
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