Monday, 14 October 2019

Shoaib Akhtar, Ramiz Raja disappointed with Sri Lankan cricketers

BIRMINGHAM: Former Pakistan fast-bowler Shoaib Akhtar has expressed his disappointment with Sri Lankan players refusing to tour Pakistan.

“So disappointed with the 10 Sri Lankan players who have pulled out of Pakistan tour,” the Rawalpindi Express tweeted on Wednesday. “Pakistan has always been a huge support for Sri Lanka Cricket.”

The tour has now come under doubt after Sri Lanka Cricket, despite having announced the squads for the tour, stated that it will reassess the situation before going ahead with the tour after receiving “reliable information of a terror threat”.

Akhtar added that Pakistan’s U19 team toured Sri Lanka after the terrorist attacks in the island-nation on Easter.

International TV pundit Ramiz Raja criticised Sri Lanka Cricket (SLC) as well as the ten players who had announced their withdrawal from the upcoming limited-over series in Pakistan, over security concerns.

The former captain shared his views in a YouTube video where he labeled the Sri Lankan players using the proverb ‘pot calling the kettle black’ and further elaborated the situation as ‘mind boggling’.

“The threat level regarding the security in Pakistan is similar to what it is in Sri Lanka or for that matter in New Zealand,” said Raja.

“It boggles my mind as to why Thisara Perera, who has been to Pakistan recently with the World XI side and have experienced the full-proof security provided to the players, would refuse to tour.”

“However I understand that every individual will see the threat from different perspective, especially those who were part of the side when the 2009 Lahore attacks happened and don’t want to put themselves in a similar situation,” he said.

Raja then continued to question the board’s lack of communication throughout the situation and expressed that there needed to be more transparency between the players and the board.

“The communication gap between Sri Lanka Cricket and their players was pretty evident,” Raja said.

“SLC approved the tour after reviewing Pakistan’s security plan, without realising that their players could put them in an embarrassing situation. They should have addressed their player’s concerns first and then announced the tour.”

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