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Rediff News  All News  » Sports » Pakistan try to save Sri Lanka tour

Pakistan try to save Sri Lanka tour

December 26, 2008 11:24 IST

Pakistan officials will meet Sri Lankan counterparts this week in a bid to save next month's tour after the sacking of Sri Lanka's interim cricket board.

Pakistan hope to convince Sri Lanka in talks at the Asian Cricket Council meeting in Kuala Lumpur to proceed with the tour amid concerns it will be scrapped by the new administrators.

The chairman of Sri Lankan cricket's interim committee, former captain Arjuna Ranatunga, confirmed the tour to Pakistan last week but he and his team were fired by the country's sports minister Gamini Lokuge on Tuesday.

The sports minister said on Wednesday the tour is one of several recent decisions by Ranatunga's administration that would be urgently reviewed.

"Everything has been handed over to sports secretary S Liyanagama and he'll be looking into security before a final decision is taken with regard to the tour," Lokuge told reporters.

Sri Lanka had agreed to step in as replacements when India cancelled their tour due to security concerns.

Pakistan Cricket Board (PCB) chief operating officer Saleem Altaf said: "We badly need to have an international series at home. We are keen on hosting Sri Lanka even though we will not make much money.

"Right now it is their internal matter so we don't want to panic but we want to ensure the tour goes on."

Pakistan have not played a home or away Test in more than a year, with opponents declining invitations or pulling out due to security fears after a series of suicide bombings in the country.

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