Pakistan news March 21, 2015

Pakistan government clears tour to Bangladesh

A bilateral series between Bangladesh and Pakistan has been in the works for four years © AFP

Pakistan will tour Bangladesh in April for a full series involving all three formats with the Pakistan government giving the board the green signal. The tour is likely to be preceded by the visit of a security team but it is understood that is more a formality than a potential decider.

The tour, scheduled to begin on April 15, will involve two Tests, three ODIs and a T20.

"Government is still concerned, probably because of the negative feelings about Pakistan there," Raza Kitchlew, PCB's senior media manager told ESPNcricinfo. "But we always had a stance to keep cricket away from politics and that's the reason we have accepted Bangladesh tour. But in coming days we will send our security team who will be meeting the Pakistan high commission to further assess the arrangements in place."

The BCB are aware of the security team's visit that further affirmed things were headed in right direction. "We have received confirmation of Pakistan's arrival in mid-April," BCB media committee chairman Jalal Yunus said. "The tour schedule has not been confirmed yet but we are hoping to have it finalised by the next 3-4 days. We will consider Dhaka, Chittagong and Khulna as venues."

Regarding City Corporation elections in Dhaka and Chittagong on April 28, he said, "We will consider our security arrangement for that day but I don't think it will have an effect on the tour's smooth progress."

The PCB had demanded 50% of the revenue from the BCB in return for touring Bangladesh as scheduled in April-May this year. The BCB in return refused to share any revenue, putting the series in doubt. The PCB looked least interested in touring; Bangladesh had pulled out from their commitment on various occasions which forced PCB to bear financial losses.

The impasse between boards eventually ended when the BCB agreed to bear the entire cost of the tour, giving Pakistan a fair reason to agree upon.

Umar Farooq is ESPNcricinfo's Pakistan correspondent. @kalson

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