Asia Most Read News Desk

Mon 20 December 2021:

After canceling this year’s tour due to security concerns, New Zealand Cricket has announced back-to-back tours of Pakistan for next season.

New Zealand administrators announced on Monday that the Black Caps will tour Pakistan from December 2022 to January 2023 to play two World Test Championship matches and three one-day internationals.

In April, the world’s number two Test team will play five one-day internationals and five Twenty20 matches in Pakistan.

New Zealand caused a diplomatic blunder in September when it canceled a series in Pakistan just as the first one-dayer was set to begin in Rawalpindi.

With little explanation about the nature of the threat, the team quickly left the country.

Soon after, England canceled their own Pakistan tour.

At the time Pakistan’s interior minister Sheikh Rasheed Ahmad was adamant there was “no threat to cricket in Pakistan, there was no threat to New Zealand and there is no threat to England”.

The cancellations were a major setback for Pakistan, which had been struggling to entice foreign teams back after home internationals were suspended in 2009 following a deadly terror attack on the Sri Lanka Test team.

“We believe this is a campaign against international cricket,” Chaudhry said.

Pakistan Cricket Board Chairman Ramiz Raja welcomed the news. “This reflects the strong, cordial and historic relations” between the two cricket boards, he said.

He added the move “reconfirms Pakistan’s status as an important member of the cricket fraternity.”

The match dates have yet to be announced.

Emails threatening NZ cricketers originated in India

According to Pakistan’s information minister, an email from India contained an unspecified threat to New Zealand’s cricket team, prompting them to cancel a tour of Pakistan.

“This email was generated from India through a VPN showing the location of Singapore,” Fawad Chaudhry told reporters.

“The post stated that New Zealand cricket team should not go to Pakistan as Daesh would attack it,” Chaudhry said.

Chaudhry said a fake social media post was shared with former Tehrik-i-Taliban Pakistan (TTP) commander Ehsanullah Ehsan’s name in August that warned the New Zealand team against visiting Pakistan.

Citing an article published by Indian newspaper The Sunday Guardian on August 21, Chaudhry said the paper had warned the visiting cricketers could get attacked in Pakistan.

“The article published in The Sunday Guardian centred around Ehsanullah Ehsan’s post,” he said. “Indian journalist Abhinandan Mishra [paper’s bureau chief] has close relations with former Afghan vice-president Amrullah Saleh,” he said.

Chaudhry said that on August 24, an email was sent to New Zealand cricketer Martin Guptill’s wife that issued a death threat to Guptil. 

He said the email was sent using ProtonMail and that Pakistan is seeking Interpol’s help in identifying the author of the email. 

The Pakistani minister said another email threat was sent to the New Zealand team on September 19 from an Indian device. 

“The device was operating 13 email IDs” and belongs to a man in India’s Maharastra state, he said. 

“This is a very strong link to India,” he said.






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