“NZ Just Killed Pakistan Cricket,” Says Shoaib Akhtar On Tour Abandonment

Pakistan’s bid to revive international cricket in the country was dealt a massive blow on Friday when New Zealand pulled out of their limited-overs tour just before the first ODI in Rawalpindi. New Zealand, who were touring Pakistan for the first time since 2003, abandoned the tour due to a security alert. “Following an escalation in the New Zealand Government threat levels for Pakistan, and advice from (New Zealand Cricket) security advisors on the ground, it has been decided the BLACKCAPS will not continue with the tour,” New Zealand Cricket said in a statement.

New Zealand’s last-minute decision to withdraw left many disappointed, among them was former Pakistan pacer Shoaib Akhtar.

“NZ just killed Pakistan cricket,” Akhtar tweeted on Friday. “Sad scenes & news from Rawalpindi,” he had tweeted a few moments earlier.

Pakistan captain Babar Azam also expressed his disappointment following the announcement.


“Extremely disappointed on the abrupt postponement of the series, which could have brought the smiles back for millions of Pakistan Cricket Fans. I’ve full trust in the capabilities and credibility of our security agencies. They are our pride and always will be! Pakistan Zindabad!” he wrote on Twitter.

Former Pakistan captain Shahid Afridi slammed New Zealand over the decision.

Meanwhile, NZC chief executive David White said pulling out of the tour was the “only responsible option”. “I understand this will be a blow for the PCB, who have been wonderful hosts, but player safety is paramount and we believe this is the only responsible option,” he was quoted as saying in an NZC press release.

NZC added that arrangements were being made for the Blackcaps’ departure from Pakistan.

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