PCB unveils schedule of England’s Test tour of Pakistan
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The Pakistan Cricket Board Monday confirmed details of England’s tour of Pakistan for three Tests, which will be played in December.
This will be England’s second half of the tour, following seven Twenty20 Internationals in Karachi and Lahore from 20 September to 2 October.
Ben Stokes’ side will open the tour with the first Test in Rawalpindi from 1-5 December, before both sides move to Multan for the second Test from 9-13 December. Karachi will host the third Test from 17-21 December.
This will be the first time England will play a Test in Rawalpindi, which has previously staged 12 matches with the home side winning five and losing three. When England last toured Pakistan in 2005, they lost the Multan Test by 22 runs. The venue has staged five Tests, with Pakistan winning three and losing one.
National Stadium was considered Pakistan’s happy hunting ground until Nasser Hussain’s side in 2000 ended Pakistan’s 34-Test unbeaten record, winning the third Test in near darkness by six wickets. Pakistan’s only other loss in 44 matches in Karachi was against South Africa, who won the 2007 Test by 160 runs.
Nonetheless, with 23 Test wins, the National Stadium remains Pakistan most favourite Test venue.
Zakir Khan, PCB Director – International Cricket said: “We are pleased that Pakistan and England Test rivalry, which has historically produced close and tight matches, will return to our backyards in December. Both the sides have evolved since they last played in Pakistan in 2005 and have recently been playing entertaining and exciting cricket. I remain confident this series will live up to the expectations of global cricket fans who want to watch and enjoy competitive and thrilling matches. Pakistan cricket fans have waited for almost 17 years to see elite England players in action. And although they have enjoyed watching a number of them live in the recent editions of the HBL Pakistan Super League, nation versus nation Test cricket is the pinnacle where international stars and heroes are born.”
Clare Connor, ECB Interim Chief Executive Officer, said: “The return of our men’s Test team to Pakistan for the first time since 2005 will be a historic occasion. The opportunity to play Test cricket in front of passionate cricket-lovers in Pakistan after such a long time is something to be cherished. We have been working closely with the PCB over recent months and I am grateful to them for everything they have done, and continue to do, to make our Test and T20 tours a mouth-watering prospect for all involved.”
The three Tests will count towards the ICC World Test Championship 2021-23. No.4 ranked England are presently sitting in the seventh position on the Test championship table, while sixth-ranked Pakistan are fifth.
Schedule of Tests:
1-5 December – 1st Test, Rawalpindi
9-13 December – 2nd Test, Multan
17-21 December – 3rd Test, Karachi
Schedule of T20Is (matches to start at 1930 PKT):
20 September – 1st T20I, Karachi
22 September – 2nd T20I, Karachi
23 September – 3rd T20I, Karachi
25 September – 4th T20I, Karachi
28 September – 5th T20I, Lahore
30 September – 6th T20I, Lahore
2 October – 7th T20I, Lahore