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Former England Skipper Collingwood Backs More Tours to Pakistan

Paul Collingwood believes other sides should consider touring Pakistan again after the recent Twenty20 series involving a World XI passed without incident.

Cricketnext |September 19, 2017, 12:16 PM IST
Former England Skipper Collingwood Backs More Tours to Pakistan

Paul Collingwood believes other sides should consider touring Pakistan again after the recent Twenty20 series involving a World XI passed without incident.

Previously there have been a whole host of teams, who have refused to visit the troubled sub-continent country due to heavy security concerns since the Sri Lankan team bus was attacked by gunmen in March 2009.

Former England all-rounder Collingwood, who made more than 300 international appearances during his career, was part of a squad that played three matches in Lahore earlier this month, with the hosts, Pakistan, prevailing 2-1.

The World players were heavily guarded throughout their stay, and Collingwood sees no reason why other nations should not follow suit, providing that similar safety measures can be guaranteed.

Pakistan have been forced to play their home matches in the United Arab Emirates, but it was announced last month that both Sri Lanka and West Indies would arrive for tours later this year, in the event of the World series going ahead undisrupted.

“We were there for five days and if you had that level of security for a longer tour, I can’t imagine how much it would cost,” Collingwood told BBC. “It was like having the army around you at all times, which was excellent because we knew we were safe, but the disruption it must cause to everyday living, because they literally closed all the roads to get to the ground."

Collingwood admitted that he was not sure about taking the trip, but said the response received from the Pakistan players and supporters during the short tour made it all the more worthwhile an exercise.

“I was a bit sceptical when I first signed up, and I haven’t had a great time with Pakistan cricket in the past in terms of Amir and no-balls in 2010, the ball tampering allegations in 2006 etc so I was thinking ‘do I want to support that’ but after the week I’ve had I’m really proud I’ve been involved,” he said.

“There’s a bigger picture and to see the Pakistan players’ faces to play in front of their home crowd, to get their feelings and how much it meant to them, they were saying ‘thank you, it means so much to us."

“You feel as though you’ve done something good for the game. I probably didn’t realise the impact it had. We’re a cricketing family and you have to help each other out."

“It’s a small stepping stone, we know it’s not the final piece of the jigsaw, and Pakistan cricket know that but they’re trying their hardest to get things happening again," Collingwood concluded.

Team Rankings

Rank Team Points Rating
1 India 4027 115
2 New Zealand 2829 109
3 South Africa 2917 108
4 England 3778 105
5 Australia 2640 98
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Rank Team Points Rating
1 England 6745 125
2 India 7071 122
3 New Zealand 4837 112
4 Australia 5543 111
5 South Africa 5193 110
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Rank Team Points Rating
1 Pakistan 7365 283
2 England 4253 266
3 South Africa 4196 262
4 India 8099 261
5 Australia 5471 261
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