England’s Moeen Ali ‘can’t wait’ to tour Pakistan

Carrie Guzman
November 20, 2020

England will play two Twenty20 internationals in Karachi on October 14 and 15, after plans to participate in a goodwill tour in the new year were put back nine months.

The all-rounder believes Pakistan's decision to honour their commitment to tour England in the midst of the coronavirus pandemic this year played a role.

Pakistan Cricket Board chairman Ehsan Mani believes the successful and event-free conduct of Pakistan Super League 5 has enhanced the image of the country and exuded confidence of hosting more worldwide teams next year. It's a massive moment for cricket going forward.

"I think it was going to happen anyway but I think it's right that we go back after such a long time".

He said that we are ready to host South Africa in January-February 2021 as part of the Future Tour Program.

European Central Bank chief executive Tom Harrison, said: "We had an wonderful summer of global cricket this year with some memorable performances, and we know how much enjoyment it brought to people whilst staying at home". The Pakistan squad were locked away in a bio-secure bubble for seven and a half weeks and Tom Harrison, the European Central Bank chief executive, said last month that English cricket had been saved by the likes of Pakistan coming to England to play.

"With the COVID-19 situation being an evolving one, the PCB will continue to monitor and work with the authorities to explore ways of allowing fans to attend matches when global cricket and Pakistan Super League matches are held in 2021".

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Worldwide cricket in Pakistan was put on hold in 2009 after gunmen attacked the Sri Lanka team bus during the second Test in Lahore.

In a further boost to Pakistan cricket, the England and Wales Cricket Board (ECB) on Wednesday confirmed that England will make their first trip to the Asian country in 16 years for a two-match T20 worldwide series next October. "That hunger has not been there in the past year or so, there's been glimpses but I know deep down I haven't done well over a period of time".

He added that he also wanted to offer his wholehearted thanks to the Sindh government and the local security agencies who continued their support of Pakistan cricket by helping in the successful delivery of the playoffs.

He emphasized on the strong relationship the two boards enjoy. "The ECB's confirmation further endorses Pakistan as safe and secure". Potential spectators were promised a full refund in case the games need to be played without fans next year too.

Meanwhile, Moeen, who has made 200 worldwide appearances, vowed to again become an England regular after admitting he hasn't "got that long left" in global cricket. "This is big news and a big achievement". If the two-Test series in June is arranged and England reach the World Test Championship final, an unlikely but not impossible scenario, they could play 17 Tests in 2020 as well as a Twenty20 World Cup and tours to Sri Lanka, India (twice), Bangladesh (white-ball cricket only), Pakistan and Australia for the Ashes. "The two-match series will serve as ideal preparation for the England team leading into an ICC T20 World Cup taking place in India during October and November 2021".

Since then Pakistan has twice hosted England - in 2012 and 2015 - in the United Arab Emirates due to security concerns over travelling to Pakistan.

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