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Aaron Finch and Babar Azam

Australia confirm first tour of Pakistan in 24 years

Pakistan news

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Australia's tour of Pakistan which was scheduled to start on March 3 will now start a day later with Rawalpindi hosting the opening Test.

Pakistan Cricket Board and Cricket Australia have announced the revised itinerary of the 2022 Australia men’s cricket team’s tour of Pakistan. 

The series which will start on March 4 includes three Tests, three ODIs and a one-off T20I. 

The schedule was revised to ease the logistical and operational challenges as well as to avoid ‘Pakistan Day’ rehearsals, which usually commence in Islamabad in the second week of March.

As per the new schedule, the series will now start and end in Rawalpindi with the opening Test match to be played from March 4-8, followed by the other two Tests. 

Earlier the first Test was scheduled to be played in Karachi from March 3 but because of a change in the venue, the second match will now be played in Karachi from March 12-16 and the third in Lahore from March 21-25.

The limited-overs matches will be played from March 29 to April 5. Rawalpindi will be hosting all the three ODIs scheduled to be played on March 29, March 31 and April 2 respectively. The tour will end with a one-off T20I to be played at Rawalpindi on March 5.

“We are pleased that the Cricket Australia Board has formally approved their side’s five-week tour itinerary and confirmed that their best available players will visit Pakistan for the first time in 24 years. We are really excited to host Pat Cummins and his players, and look forward to a competitive series that will comprise three Tests, three ODIs and a T20I,” PCB Chief Executive Faisal Hasnain said in a statement.

“While Australia will arrive at the back of strong performances in their home series against England, our team has been playing excellent cricket resulting in our players sweeping the ICC Awards. This braces for a keenly contested series, something that the fans will thoroughly enjoy and remember for a long time,” he added.

The Australian team will arrive in Islamabad through a chartered flight on February 27. The boards have also decided that the Australian players will complete their mandatory isolation in their home country, before heading to Pakistan. After one-day room isolation in Pakistan, the Australian players will be allowed to take part in training sessions at the Pindi Cricket Stadium.

The limited-overs players are expected to arrive in Lahore on March 24 and will also be following the same isolation process. The Australian team will then be travelling to Islamabad for the first ODI in Rawalpindi on March 29.

The three test matches will be part of the ICC World Test Championship, while the ODIs are linked to the ICC Men’s Cricket World Cup Super League from which the top eight sides, including hosts India, will qualify directly for the 2023 50-over World Cup.

Revised schedule:

4-8 March – 1st Test, Rawalpindi

12-16 March – 2nd Test, Karachi

21-25 March – 3rd Test, Lahore

29 March – 1st ODI, Rawalpindi

31 March – 2nd ODI, Rawalpindi

2 April – 3rd ODI, Rawalpindi

5 April – one-off T20I, Rawalpindi

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