New Delhi – Pakistan wants to host the first bilateral Test tour by India in eight years in the United Arab Emirates in December, the country’s cricket chief Shaharyar Khan said on Sunday.
The tour, comprising three Tests, five one-dayers and two Twenty20 games is part of a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) signed between the two boards last year to play five series in the next eight years.
Khan, the chairman of the Pakistan Cricket Board, told reporters after a meeting with Indian cricket chief Jagmohan Dalmiya in Kolkata on Sunday.
“Preparations are in full swing. We have to overcome the final hurdle because an India-Pakistan series is more important than any series in world cricket.”
The reluctance of the Indian government to clear bilateral cricket matches against Pakistan due to political tensions has meant the two nations have not contested a Test series since 2007.
But they continue to meet in multi-nation tournaments like the World Cup or the Champions Trophy.
Dalmiya said he was hopeful the series will go ahead — provided the government gave the green signal.
“We are very hopeful of reviving the series,” he said. “But a few things need to be sorted out. Without the support of the federal home ministry and the government, we can’t go forward.”
The Board of Control for Cricket in India said in a statement that it was “desirable to recommence cricket contact” with Pakistan.
“After proactive discussions, since there are certain matters that need to be addressed and considered, it was decided to take appropriate steps,” the statement said.
“The two boards would be in regular touch and review the situation.”
No Test-playing team has toured Pakistan since militants attacked the Sri Lankan team bus in Lahore in March 2009, leaving eight people dead and seven visiting players injured.