Champions Trophy 2009 October 16, 2008

Pakistan chief relieved at Champions Trophy decision

Cricinfo staff

Pakistan's recently instated chairman, Ijaz Butt, has wholeheartedly welcomed the news that the Champions Trophy will finally go ahead in 2009.

Yesterday, the ICC rescheduled the tournament to take place next September, after it was abandoned earlier this year due to security concerns over the country's political stability.

"Of course, it's a big relief," Butt told AFP from Dubai where he attended the ICC's board meeting. "Previously there was some opposition on holding this event in Pakistan but I am happy that it was a consensus decision."

The location of the event has yet to be finalised by the ICC, and a decision will be made after India's tour of the country early next year, in which Pakistan host them for three Tests, five one-dayers and a Twenty20.

"Pakistan government is taking care of improving security and every step will be taken to hold the India series in a peaceful manner," Butt said, "because that will allay fears of other countries."

Pakistan has struggled to attract touring teams for a number of years owing to their concerns over its security. Two home series, against Australia and West Indies, were relocated in the aftermath of the 9/11 bombings in America in 2001, and Australia also postponed their full tour of Pakistan this year. They have agreed to split the tour into two trips, with five ODIs scheduled for March 2009 and a three-Test series in 2010.