England accept Pakistan assurance to go ahead with ODIs
England have accepted an “unequivocal assurance” from Pakistan that they will play the one-day series which starts with a Twenty20 game on Monday.
The hosts have ended contingency plans for England to play an International XI at Bristol and then face West Indies in the five 50-over games which follow.
Pakistan will complete their tour as scheduled despite Inzamam-ul-Haq’s disciplinary hearing being delayed. He faces ball-tampering and disrepute charges arising out of the fourth Test.
They re-affirmed their commitment to the one-day series following Friday’s revelation that umpire Darrell Hair offered to resign in return for $500,000 in the wake of last weekend’s furore at The Oval.
“We are very keen that the actions of some officials do not affect the goodwill which exists between the Pakistan team and their supporters and the England team and their supporters,” said Pakistan Cricket Board chairman Shaharyar Khan.
The tourists believe Hair’s e-mail to the International Cricket Council represents a “moral victory” for them and that it strengthens Inzamam’s case.
“We were very confident that we hadn’t tampered with the ball,” team manager Zaheer Abbas told the BBC Asian Network.
Hair and fellow umpire Billy Doctrove penalised Pakistan five runs and allowed England to choose a replacement ball after they deemed the previous one to be illegally altered by the tourists.
Pakistan staged a sit-in after tea, which led to the officials deciding they had forfeited the game. “This also proves our protest on the fourth day of the final Test was legitimate.
“This is a moral victory for us, and it’s good that now this issue can reach its conclusion,” said Zaheer.
“As for whether we need to revisit the result of the match, we’ll have to discuss it with the parties concerned.”
England and Wales Cricket Board chief executive David Collier, meanwhile, has thanked the cricket community for their willingness to help if Pakistan had abandoned the tour.
“ECB also wishes to thank the 12 players who had agreed to play in the International XI and the management team who had been invited to support the International XI,” he said.
ICC chief Malcolm Speed, meanwhile, is delighted that attention will now switch back to events on the field.
Meanwhile, International Cricket Council chief executive Malcolm Speed wants attention switched back to events on the field.
“England and Pakistan have produced some superb cricket this summer and the best result for everyone now would be for them to produce more of the same in the forthcoming NatWest Series.
“I now call on both sides to go out and put a smile back on the faces of the world’s cricket lovers with some superb action and remind everyone why this is such a great game,” Speed said.
Source:The NewsMore on:england, Pakistan, Pakistan in England 2006
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