Cricket News By TODAYLIVESCORE.INFO - 'Everything changed' - NZC defends decision to abort Pakistan tour. The two teams were scheduled to play three ODIs and five T20Is.
The two teams were scheduled to play three ODIs and five T20Is.
Having abandoned their tour of Pakistan in the hours leading up to the opening ODI, following a “specific and credible threat', New Zealand cricket team and support staff arrived in Dubai on a special charter, in the wee hours of Sunday (September 19).
The 34-member contingent, including 21 players and support staff, will serve a 24-hour period of self-isolation in their Dubai hotel before 21 of this party returns back home to New Zealand over the course of next week “as flights and Managed Isolation & Quarantine rooms become available,” said New Zealand Cricket in a statement. The remaining players will continue to stay in the UAE and join up with the New Zealand T20 WC squad, ahead of the October 17 start.
Without elaborating on the nature of the security threat that the touring party received on the day of the game, NZC chief executive David White said, in the statement, that “everything changed” in an instant on Friday, the day of the series opener.
In the face of the security alert, further corroborated by NZC's security consultants – who were on the ground in Pakistan, and by other independent sources, White said they had no choice but to ensure the safety of the touring contingent first.
“We appreciate this has been a terribly difficult time for the PCB and wish to pass on our sincere thanks to chief executive Wasim Khan and his team for their professionalism and care,” White noted.
While NZC did share the intel with its Pakistan counterpart PCB, White insisted that the specific details could and will not be shared publicly.
“What I can say is that we were advised this was a specific and credible threat against the team. We had several conversations with New Zealand government officials before making the decision and it was after informing the PCB of our position that we understand a telephone discussion was conducted between the respective Prime Ministers.
“Unfortunately, given the advice we'd received, there was no way we could stay in the country.
“Everything changed on Friday,” White noted. “The advice changed, the threat level changed and, as a consequence, we took the only responsible course of action possible.”