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I have never been a fan of neutral venues but the predicament of Pakistan cricket calls for pragmatism. Pakistan's cricketers require regular international competition. Another year of desolation, like 2008, may condemn Pakistan cricket to a slippery slope that cannot be climbed.
Hence, Pakistan must embrace neutral venues for countries unwilling to travel there.
The second question, however, is where to play. The dustbowls of the Gulf create a depressing, energy-sapping version of Test cricket that is no advancement on playing in Pakistan.
Why not turn adversity into opportunity?
Choose a venue that can produce compelling cricket, vibrant crowds, and an essential educational experience for Pakistan's cricketers. Choose a venue that offers cricket when other teams will be available to rearrange cancelled series, and will relish the experience. Choose a venue that could turn the PCB from villains to heroes.
I'm with Giles Clarke. Pakistan should choose the English option.
Kamran Abbasi is an editor, writer and broadcaster. He tweets hereFeeds: Kamran Abbasi
© ESPN Sports Media Ltd.
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Kamran Abbasi is an editor, writer and broadcaster. He was the first Asian columnist for Wisden Cricket Monthly and wisden.com. Kamran is the editor of the Journal of the Royal Society of Medicine. @KamranAbbasi