Minutes before the start of the first match, New Zealand cricket team has cancelled its tour of Pakistan Friday after informing the Pakistan Cricket Board (PCB) of a “security alert”, a statement issued by the board confirmed.
“Earlier today, New Zealand Cricket informed us they had been alerted to some security alert and have unilaterally decided to postpone the series,” reads the press release, Geo News reported.
“Pakistan Cricket Board and Pakistan Government made foolproof security arrangements for all visiting teams. We have assured the New Zealand Cricket of the same. The Pakistan prime minister spoke personally to the prime minister of New Zealand and informed her that we have one of the best intelligence systems in the world and that no security threat of any kind exists for the visiting team,” it added.
The PCB said that the security officials who travelled with the New Zealand team were satisfied with security arrangements made by the Pakistan government throughout their stay here.
“PCB is willing to continue the scheduled matches. However, cricket lovers in Pakistan and around the world will be disappointed by this last-minute withdrawal,” stated the PCB.
Former Pakistan fast bowler Shoaib Akhtar lashed out at the New Zealand cricket authorities for cancelling the series unilaterally, saying that Pakistan has been embarrassed in front of the world.
“We stand firm with our government, the Pakistan Cricket Board (PCB), our army and security agencies,” said the Rawalpindi Express, speaking to Geo News.
He also said that New Zealand had killed Pakistan cricket, “NZ just killed Pakistan cricket.” Akhtar tweeted.