Musharraf invited to attend Abu Dhabi ODIs

Written by Kashif Aziz on April 16th, 2006   (85 views)

The organisers of the two One-day Internationals (ODIs) being played between Pakistan and India in Abu Dhabi on April 18 and 19 are keen to have President Pervez Musharraf attend the games, which would be the first internationals to be held at the Sheikh Zayed Stadium.

Well placed sources in Islamabad told ‘The News’ that an invitation had been extended to the president by the Abu Dhabi Cricket Council (ADCC) through the good offices of the ruler of Abu Dhabi, Sheikh Khalifa bin Zayed Nahayan.

“There are good chances that the president might attend the matches because the first game is being held to raise funds for the victims of the October 8 earthquake that caused a lot of devastation in northern Pakistan and some parts of India,” the source said.

The Pakistan and Indian cricket boards have decided that 75 percent of the earnings of the first game would go for the earthquake-affected people in Pakistan.

“Pakistan has very close relations with the United Arab Emirates (UAE) and the Abu Dhabi ruler Sheikh Nahayan and Musharraf is expected to accept this invitation,” the source said.

Sheikh Nahayan is the chief patron of the ADCC and it was on his initiative that the Sheikh Zayed Stadium, an international standard venue, was built.

However, understandably, the invitation might be kept a low-key affair because of the recent tragedy in Karachi when 57 people were killed at a religious congregation at Nishtar Park.

If President Musharraf does attend the two matches that have been sanctioned by the International Cricket Council (ICC) it would be a big boost for Abu Dhabi as an international cricket venue.

Source: The News

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