The cricket board of Sri Lanka on Thursday revealed that the team will tour Pakistan amid concerns that during the six-match trip, teams might be the victims of terror attacks.
The tour was put in jeopardy after Sri Lanka Cricket (SLC) revealed last week that they received a warning from their Prime Minister’s Office. Some Sri Lankan players including T20I captain LasithMalinga, Angelo Mathews and DimuthKarunaratne opted out of the Pakistan tour. While Pakistani legend JavedMiandad laughed at the Sri Lankan teams requesting the SLC to punish those who failed to move, former Pakistani captain ShahidAfridi went up with a ludicrous statement that the Indian Premier League (IPL) was the cause behind some Sri Lankan athletes ‘ boycott ruling.
ShahidAfridi stated in a video conference that if they visited Pakistan, the IPL promised not to offer Sri Lankan teams a deal.
“Sri Lankan players are under pressure from IPL franchises. I spoke to Sri Lankan players last time when there was talk of them coming to Pakistan and playing in PSL. They said they wanted to come, but IPL guys say if you go to Pakistan we won’t give you a contract,” said the all-rounder.
“Pakistan’s always supported Sri Lanka, it never happened that we had a tour of Sri Lanka and our players rested. SL’s board should put pressure on their contracted players to go to Pakistan. Sri Lankan players who’ll come will always be remembered in Pakistan’s history”
Sri Lanka Cricket Secretary Mohan de Silva said on Thursday they got the all-clear from the Ministry of Defence to depart on Tuesday for Pakistan.
“We have the green light from the defence ministry,” de Silva told AFP. “The tour is on as we planned. I myself and our office bearers will also be accompanying the team.”
Reports of a probable terror attack last week were submitted for inquiry to the Ministry of Defence.
During a test match at Pakistan’s Lahore in March 2009, the Sri Lankan team was the target of an attack with six athletes wounded when terrorists assaulted their bus.
There have been killings of six Pakistani police officers and two citizens. A majority of big players have declined to visit the nation of South Asia since the assault. In October 2017, Sri Lanka’s first match in Lahore was a T20 game against Pakistan.