Chair and CEO of Cricket Ireland Visit Pakistan to Review Local Conditions
Cricket Ireland’s Chairman Ross McCollum and Chief Executive Warren Deutrom have spent the last five days in Lahore, Pakistan after accepting an invitation from the Pakistan Cricket Board (PCB) to visit the country and attend the latest Pakistan v Sri Lanka T20 International.
Speaking with the PCB Podcast in Lahore yesterday, Deutrom said:
“It is a great pleasure to be here. First of all, we have been treated fabulously well. The courtesy, the generosity, the hospitality, the warmth, the love of cricket is plainly obvious for anyone to see.
“Cricket Ireland is now a Test nation and we certainly feel it is important that we play our part in being a mature and grown-up member of the cricket family. We want to play our part in assisting getting international cricket back in Pakistan.
“To be honest and just at a very human level until you see it with yourself, you come with a set of conceptions or preconceptions, and I think this visit, which was generously made at the invitation of the Pakistan Cricket Board, would begin to change those perceptions.
“What we saw in Islamabad and Lahore is the extraordinary lengths to which the cricket authorities, the security authorities, the government and police, everyone has been working incredibly closely together to building that confidence.
“It begins to build a sense of OK, well, what are the reasons now to say why wouldn’t we come if we have had all these sensitive comforts provided to us. So, it is the beginning, I believe, of a conversation.
“We have a board meeting at the end of this month and would like to convey to the board what we have seen and the remarkable steps that have been taken to instil that level of confidence in other cricket boards around the world.
“We will do what we will always have always done, engage with our governments and insurers, and talk to our players. We will speak with the other boards that have been here in the past, obviously Sri Lanka Cricket, and then, we need to wait for an invitation.
“When we receive an invitation, we will go through the motions and will take it extremely seriously. There is no date set. However, it wouldn’t surprise me if that date or if that invitation was received by the end of the year for a tour taking place, perhaps next year, maybe the year after, I don’t know.
“I think that’s something we should take extremely seriously.”
Ireland and Pakistan have had a long and inter-twined cricket history. The sides first met in men’s international cricket in 1962 and women’s international cricket in 1997, with the first Test match between the two countries being played in 2000 between the women’s teams. Perhaps the most famous encounter was at the 2007 Cricket World Cup when Ireland upset Pakistan at Sabina Park in Jamaica, but just as memorable for different reasons was the visit of Pakistan to Dublin in 2018 to play Ireland in its first-ever men’s Test match.
The two sides are set to meet again in 2020 for a two-match T20 International series in Ireland.
© Cricket World 2019