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Sri Lanka tour of Pakistan

Sri Lanka coach Ratnayake hints at Test tour of Pakistan in December

Sri Lanka’s interim head coach Rumesh Ratnayake feels his side's ongoing limited-overs series in Pakistan could lead to a tour of the South Asian country in December for two Test matches.

Sri Lanka was originally scheduled to travel to Pakistan for a two-match Test series in September but this plan was postponed after several top players including Test and ODI captain Dimuth Karunaratne opted out of the tour citing security concerns.

The Pakistan Cricket Board (PCB) is hoping the current tour goes trouble-free and Ratnayake stated this will convince his compatriots to visit Pakistan in the future.

“This series is a precursor for that tour [for the Test series in December] if everything goes smoothly during the coming several weeks," he told a media conference on the eve of the second ODI in Karachi.

“I’m sure this will certainly encourage others to take decisions but then it is something which we can’t enforce it on them. They took a decision and we have to respect that.

"If things go well, this will be huge for the future, not only for them but all countries to be here."

Sri Lanka's tour of Pakistan was initially hampered following reports of a possible terror threat targeting the travelling team causing their government to conduct a security reassessment.

The Sri Lankan cricket board eventually received the all-clear from its defence ministry as they arrived in Karachi last week amid foolproof security.

'I think the security has been immense'

Ratnayake focused on the 'top-notch' security provided to his team, lauding the hosts for prioritizing their safety.

“I cannot tell others, they’ll have to come and experience themselves. I can tell my board or my players and as far as my experience is concerned, I think the security has been immense," he said.

The former Sri Lankan paceman admitted persistent rain had been a major obstacle in preparing for the series.

He revealed severe downpour back in Colombo leading up to the tour had also caused them problems.

“It has been raining for a while since we arrived here. Even before we came over, the preparations were hampered by rain.

"We had only a day's training last Thursday and today [Sunday] was another one. The preparations have not been great but that won't be an excuse I will give because they are professional players," he added.

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