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February 4, 2009
The Pakistan Cricket Board is confident its one-day series with Australia will proceed in April, with a schedule to be released later this week. Ijaz Butt, the PCB chairman, met with Cricket Australia officials in Melbourne on Wednesday to discuss the contest, which is likely to be held after Australia's tour of South Africa.
The series is certain to be played at neutral venues - perhaps split between Abu Dhabi and Dubai - and will probably consist of five one-day and two Twenty20 internationals. Butt, who was a guest of Cricket Australia at the Allan Border Medal on Tuesday, said he would release further details upon his return to Pakistan on Friday.
"I think the series will be going ahead," he said. It will be the first time Australia have played Pakistan in an away bilateral series since the three Tests in 2002, which were staged in Colombo and Sharjah.
Australia were due in the country for Test and limited-overs contests last year but they were postponed due to safety and security concerns. The series in Pakistan will severely limit the availability of Australia's one-day players from participating in the second Indian Premier League.