Australia to tour Pakistan next year for first time since 1998

Published November 8, 2021
Pakistan team celebrate after winning the third T20 cricket against Australia in this 2018 file photo. — AFP
Pakistan team celebrate after winning the third T20 cricket against Australia in this 2018 file photo. — AFP

Australia will tour Pakistan in March and April next year — the country's first visit since 1998 — to play a series of Test, ODI and T20 matches, the Pakistan Cricket Board (PCB) announced on Monday.

In a statement, the PCB said the visiting team will play three Tests, three one day internationals (ODIs) and one Twenty-20 international (T20I) match.

The Test matches will be played in Karachi, Rawalpindi and Lahore from March 3 to 25, the PCB said, adding that all four white-ball matches will be played in Lahore form March 29 to April 5.

"The Tests will be played as part of the ICC World Test Championship, while the ODIs will be connected to the ICC Men's Cricket World Cup Super League — a 13-team event from which the seven highest-placed sides and the hosts, India, will qualify directly for the event proper in 2023," the cricket body said.

PCB Chairman Ramiz Raja said he was "delighted to welcome Australia to Pakistan".

Raja observed that Australia was one of the high-performing cricket teams and playing with them in Pakistan after a gap of 24 years would be a "special treat for the fans".

The chairman said the tour would also give the Aussies the opportunity to not only play at some of Pakistan's most iconic venues but also "feel and enjoy the respect, love and hospitality that this great country offers, something which most of their previous generation of cricketers missed out by playing offshore".

For his part, Cricket Australia Chief Executive Nick Hockley said Australia was "excited" about the prospect of visiting Pakistan and playing a highly anticipated series in a country "so incredibly passionate about the game and their national team".

"Pakistan is a formidable opposition with an exceptionally talented team, as evidenced by their dynamic performances in the current ICC Men's T20 World Cup in the UAE," he said.

Hockley thanked the PCB for its efforts to plan the tour and said the Australian cricket board was looking forward to working with the PCB and relevant agencies to "ensure that appropriate and sufficient arrangements are put in place for the tour".

Hockley shared that Cricket Australia's delegation will visit Pakistan to meet PCB and provincial and federal authorities to discuss and finalise matters related to the tour including team operations, logistics, security and Covid-19 protocols.

Pakistan had staged its last four series with Australia in Sri Lanka, England and the UAE.


Schedule of matches:

  • 1st Test, Karachi - March 3 to 7
  • 2nd Test, Rawalpindi - March 12 to 16
  • 3rd Test, Lahore - March 21 to 25
  • 1st ODI, Lahore - March 29
  • 2nd ODI, Lahore - March 31
  • 3rd ODI, Lahore - April 2
  • T20I, Lahore - April 5

Earlier this month, the PCB announced that the West Indies cricket team will play three T20Is and three ICC Men's Cricket World Cup Super League matches at Karachi's National Stadium from Dec 13 to 22.

It will be the West Indies' first tour of Pakistan since April 2018 when they had played three T20Is.

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