Personal bodyguards will shadow Australia’s cricketers during next month’s Pakistan tour as part of planned stringent security usually reserved for visiting heads of state, reports said.
The Pakistan Cricket Board has proposed the measures following Australian concerns over security that has left a question mark over the future of the tour, in a nation which has suffered a string of bombings and other violence.
Bodyguards will be assigned to each Australian player, bomb-detection dogs used and roads closed to all traffic nearby as the visiting team travels to and from grounds, The Sydney Morning Herald said.
“If a player is travelling in a lift, there will be security with him. If he goes to eat somewhere, he will have protection. There will be man-to-man security,” a senior PCB official told the newspaper.
“All roads will be closed to traffic every time the team travels to and from the ground. When they are entering their team bus, it will be checked by bomb-disposal units. There will be sniffer dogs, too.”
However Cricket Australia still has concerns about the tour, and contacted PCB officials on Thursday about security at venues in Karachi, Lahore, Multan and Faisalabad, the newspaper said.
CA chairman Creagh O’Connor will also write to his Pakistani counterpart, Nasim Ashraf, to further outline his worries, the newspaper said. The pair along with other cricket officials from the two nations met in Dubai this week over the tour, with an option of playing the series in Australia discussed.
O’Connor is believed to have told Ashraf that March-April would not be an ideal time to play in Australia due to wet weather and a clash with popular football codes. “CA have got issues with the venues,” the official said. “We will wait to see Creagh O’Connor’s letter. They don’t have an issue with the cricketing side of things, it comes to the safety and security of their players.
“Once your (pre-tour security assessors) are out here, we can sit down and discuss whatever needs to be discussed and any issues they have. “What the indication is from them is there is too short a time, and they won’t be able to come for a pre-tour visit.”
Source:Cricket NewsMore on:Australia, Australia in Pakistan 2008, Pakistan, PCB
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Post InfoThis entry was posted on Saturday, February 9th, 2008 and is filed under General, Cricket.
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