England have pulled out of their tour to Pakistan next month following New Zealand’s hasty departure on security grounds last week.
Eoin Morgan’s team had been due to play two Twenty20 internationals in Rawalpindi on November 14 and 15 and England women were scheduled to feature in five matches on the trip.
‘The ECB Board convened this weekend to discuss these extra England Women’s and Men’s games in Pakistan and we can confirm that the Board has reluctantly decided to withdraw both teams from the October trip,’ read a statement.
England have pulled out of their white-ball tour to Pakistan scheduled for next month
It comes following New Zealand’s hasty departure on security grounds last week
‘The mental and physical well-being of our players and support staff remains our highest priority and this is even more critical given the times we are currently living in.
‘We know there are increasing concerns about travelling to the region and believe that going ahead will add further pressure to a playing group who have already coped with a long period of operating in restricted Covid environments.
‘There is the added complexity for our Men’s T20 squad. We believe that touring under these conditions will not be ideal preparation for the ICC Men’s T20 World Cup, where performing well remains a top priority for 2021.
‘We understand that this decision will be a significant disappointment to the PCB, who have worked tirelessly to host the return of international cricket in their country.
England women were also scheduled to feature in five matches on the trip to Pakistan
‘Their support of English and Welsh cricket over the last two summers has been a huge demonstration of friendship.
‘We are sincerely sorry for the impact this will have on cricket in Pakistan and emphasise an ongoing commitment to our main touring plans there for 2022.’
New Pakistan Cricket Board chief Ramiz Raja slammed England for their decision to pull out of the tour, claiming they had ‘failed’ a member of ‘their cricket fraternity’ at the most vital moment by ‘making excuses’.
‘Disappointed with England, pulling out of their commitment & failing a member of their cricket fraternity when it needed it most,’ he said.
‘Survive we will inshallah. A wake up call for Pak team to become the best team in the world for teams to line up to play them without making excuses.’