September 28, 2001

Three extra games confirmed in Australia as NZ finally abandons Pakistan tour

New Zealand will play three extra games in Australia as warm-ups for its three-Test series after the Pakistan tour was finally abandoned today.

New Zealand Cricket had set today as the last day in which it could possibly entertain an abbreviated tour of Pakistan should the build-up of a response to the destruction of the World Trade Centre in New York have lessened.

NZC chief executive Martin Snedden initiated discussions with Australia almost as soon as the tour was halted soon after the New Zealand team had left for Pakistan. They were held over in Singapore for 48 hours while the situation was assessed and then pulled home.

Australia's Cricket Board considered New Zealand's request at its board meeting last Friday and has allocated three games before the scheduled tour start on October 31 against Queensland.

The extra games are: October 16-19, Queensland 2nd XI at Allan Border Field, Oct 21-23, ACT Invitation XI at Manuka Oval, Oct 26-28 QCA President's XI at Allan Border Field.

Snedden said: "NZC is grateful for the cooperation of the Australian Cricket Board in arranging three additional games for the CLEAR Black Caps.

"These matches will provide a good build-up to the first Test, allowing our players to adapt to Australian conditions, establish form, and prepare for a gruelling series after a lay-off of some months," Snedden said.

He added that while a state game or two might have been the preferred option, NZC fully understood that this was not possible and that if the positions had been reversed it may have faced a similar situation in New Zealand.

New Zealand has also agreed to a change in its itinerary with the match against the Prime Minister's XI in Canberra being transferred from November 14 to December 6.

New Zealand's team for the tour will be named next Friday, October 5. The CLEAR Black Caps will assemble in Christchurch on October 11, and fly to Brisbane the next day.