Pakistan head coach and chief selector, Misbah-ul-Haq, has said it will be a huge disappointment if Bangladesh refuse to tour Pakistan for the scheduled Test matches.
Misbah’s comments came after Sri Lanka successfully toured Pakistan for a two-Test series in Rawalpindi and Karachi.
Misbah said security was a ‘lame excuse’ and added it will be great injustice to Pakistan if Bangladesh refuse to play Test cricket in Pakistan.
“It will be huge disappointment if Bangladesh don’t come to Pakistan to play Test cricket,” he said.
“There is no excuse not to visit Pakistan now, security is just a lame excuse, teams are now coming, even you’re agreeing to play T20Is then why are you reluctant to play Test cricket? It will be great injustice to Pakistan.
"If we don’t play our tests at home then we will be disadvantaged. We can’t deprive our players of cricket at home grounds.”
Bangladesh are due to play three T20Is and two Tests in Pakistan. According to media reports, they have agreed to play the limited overs fixtures but are reluctant to play the longest format in Pakistan.
Instead, they have proposed a neutral venue for Test series which was rejected strongly by PCB chairman today. "All of Pakistan's matches, against Bangladesh or anyone else, will take place in Pakistan,” Ehsan Mani said when asked about Bangladesh tour.
Pakistan are scheduled to tour England for three Tests in July which leaves a significant gap if they don’t play Bangladesh. The head coach-cum-chief selector said Pakistan were already playing lesser Test matches and pointed out the case of Test specialists like Azhar Ali, who needed frequent games to stay in touch with the standards of top-flight cricket.
“If this Test series doesn't happen, we will be playing our next series in England after a long span. Then we cannot blame our players. Azhar Ali returned back to form after a long gap and then again he has to wait for another four months. He will have a huge disadvantage. It will feel like making a debut in the next series. Our players need to play cricket on a consistent basis.”
Pakistan’s Test skipper Azhar Ali said he could see no reason behind Bangladesh’s reluctance to play longest format in Pakistan.
"I'm sure the PCB is looking at this, but I don't understand what the reason for not visiting could be," he said as quoted by Cricinfo after Pakistan’s win over Sri Lanka.
"This is the ICC World Test Championship. Lots of teams have come and gone, we've had several PSL matches here. The World XI side came and major current players have played here. Most special of all, the Sri Lankan team has come and played not just one, but two Test matches. If teams aren't going to support each other here in Asia, and cricket boards in Asia don't support each other, then where will we end up?
"We play very little Test cricket anyway, and I'm sure Bangladesh don't play many Test matches either. So we must support each other and I would urge the ICC to step in because there is no excuse not to come.
“Things are running so smoothly, and the crowds are coming here. Everything is running perfectly and we've seen quality cricket, so I don't think there can be any excuse."