India news June 2, 2014

Laxman, Kirmani call for India-Pakistan series'


At a time when BCCI and PCB have been involved in discussions over the bilateral-series agreements, former players Syed Kirmani and VVS Laxman have said India and Pakistan "must" play each other more often.

Kirmani, who has been involved in numerous India-Pakistan duels in the 1970s and '80s, said India and Pakistan must resume playing each other at neutral venues. "The best thing to start the bilateral relations is to have India-Pakistan play at a neutral place to start with. I think that would be the best idea to go about to having a series with Pakistan. It should be in a neutral place," Kirmani said during a panel discussion during the CEAT awards in Mumbai on Monday, adding that the two boards should start exploring options in Asia.

"It will offer an opportunity if Pakistan and India play in Asian countries where the Asian Cricket Council is trying to promote cricket. It will be a wonderful opportunity for those Asian countries [hosting the series] to see the top two teams of Asia play one another and that would be a source of inspiration."

The BCCI and PCB have been in discussions about playing six series against each other during the eight-year cycle starting after the 2015 World Cup. PCB chief operating officer Subhan Ahmed had said last month that the PCB will get in touch with the BCCI to work towards getting closer to signing bilateral agreements.

With the strained diplomatic relationship between the two countries, India and Pakistan have not played a Test since 2007. Meanwhile, with all the Full Member teams reluctant to tour Pakistan ever since the terrorist attack on the Sri Lanka team bus in March 2009, Pakistan have been playing most of their home series in the UAE.

Citing the response from the fans during the short limited-overs series between the two teams in India in December 2013, Laxman stressed that an India-Pakistan series is "like the Ashes and everyone looks forward to it". He differed with Kirmani's view on the possible venue, saying India and Pakistan should play each other in India.

"When Pakistan came for three one-dayers and two T20s, the crowd really loved it. I don't think any problem would happen. It is like the Ashes and everyone looks forward to the Ashes and the England and Australia rivalry," Laxman said.

"I think this [the India-Pakistan rivalry] is the same, on par with the Ashes. I don't see any problem hosting it in India. I am not sure about Pakistan, though. I know for a fact that since the attack that happened on the Sri Lankan team, a lot of players are apprehensive of going there."

Amol Karhadkar is a correspondent at ESPNcricinfo

Comments have now been closed for this article

  • Manya on June 4, 2014, 17:20 GMT

    India should never play Pakistan except for World Cup events.

  • Android on June 3, 2014, 20:28 GMT

    i think a series between these 2 teams is way more intese and a hit than ashes. these 2 can fill up grounds while playing anywhere in the world and may be able to do that even if they play at north pole ;)

    they should play full series more often. its always a profitable series. cricket fans want to watch intense cricket instead of politics in cricket.

    hoping to see full series soon.

  • Android on June 3, 2014, 18:59 GMT

    india is.having big names in team.n.thy r inproving day by day by ipL n.lots more n on.othr hand pak has few gud players wth hardly sum facilities as compared to int. big3 teams n no international crickets adds to pcb n.players problems. so it ll be interesting to hav a indo-pak bilateral series.test cricket is the best way to judge a players strength stamina n mental caliber n pak players comes in hurry n goes back in want to have a full fit series wth India wth test odis n t20 n its much more popular n interesting thn ashes.wana see huge clash of titans

  • Ali Asghar on June 3, 2014, 14:56 GMT

    It's been a long time now we haven't played a test series against India, I really don't want ODIs and T20s but test series, a 5-match test series, I am dying to witness the tensions, passion and attractions and changing and twisting game minute by minute in 5 day games, this is when cricket will be at its best, com'on BCCI you'll going to earn more than you would imagine :)

  • Dummy4 on June 3, 2014, 8:04 GMT

    ind pak 5 test & 5 odi & 3 t20 series in uae is perfect.......

  • Senguttuvan on June 3, 2014, 6:14 GMT

    India vs pakistan series in U.A.E is good.

  • Subramani on June 3, 2014, 4:18 GMT

    Cpt.Meanster Did anyone think that Modi will ensure the attendance of Nawaz Sherrif for his swearing in ? You saw the goodwill on that occasion. You must realise that we are in a changing world in terms of international relations. I have a strong feeling that Pakistan's cricketers will be playing in the next IPL and we will have Pakistan coming over to India for cricket soon. I am not sure about the Indian team going over to Pakistan just yet but that too is possible. Let us wait for that day to happen.

  • Jay on June 2, 2014, 23:38 GMT

    With Mr. Narendra Modi elected as India's prime minister, I can't see this happening. An ODI series at a neutral venue is more likely but a full fledged tourwith test matches hosted in India is unlikely. Touring Pakistan is entirely out of question given the dangerous situation there. So all in all, the situation doesn't look good. However, since the PCB has accepted the Big 3's proposal on the grounds of bilateral commitments, the most likely scenario will be a limited overs series played in the UAE or in India depending on the no-objection clearance from the Indian government. As fans, we can only hope for the best.

  • Imran on June 2, 2014, 23:05 GMT

    At least few people in india speaks just for cricket. I was a huge huge fan of watching cricket but i hardly watch now. i still play though. Cricket is too greedy and few rich board nations have dominated now in terms taking control. But other few countries have huge talent, unfortunately they are just being getting neglected. I hope to see Pakistan and inida playing in neutral venues if india dont wish to visit Pakistan currently.

  • Dummy4 on June 2, 2014, 22:26 GMT

    Ind and Pak are competing in almost all other thinkable sports. This is ridiculous. There should be no ifs and buts. These two MUST play against each other. I think the tension and excitement of these matches is far greater than the Ashes. Also, once and for all a proper name should be coined for the Test Trophy between these two rivals...I had suggested Amarnath-Kardar Trophy to honor the great captains who led in the first ever series between these two countries.

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