Bangladesh rule out playing England in neutral venue
Dhaka, July 10
Bangladesh has ruled out playing England’s cricket team in a third country in September, an idea floated after a deadly terror attack in the capital killed 18 foreigners last week.
England are scheduled to arrive in Bangladesh on September 30 to play two Tests and three one-day internationals. England’s limited-over captain Eion Morgan voiced “big concern” after last Saturday’s attack by Islamist extremists at an upmarket restaurant, saying a neutral venue could be an option for the series.
And an England and Wales Cricket Board spokesman hinted at a possible cancellation of the Bangladesh tour saying that “if the environment is not acceptably safe or the right measures not in place, we would take the appropriate steps”. However, Bangladesh Cricket Board chief executive officer Nizamuddin Chowdhury told reporters in Dhaka on Sunday that Bangladesh wanted the matches to go ahead on home turf. “We always believe suspending cricket in a particular country will not bring any solution,” Chowdhury said. “Our all-out effort will be fulfilling our commitment of hosting the series here,” he added.
He also noted that a security delegation from England would be coming to inspect the security measures in place ahead of the games. “England security delegate was supposed to visit last month. But they are taking time,” he said. “They will also tour India after Bangladesh series. Perhaps, they will do the security inspection both in India and Bangladesh together.”
Australia pulled out of a tour of Bangladesh last year due to security concerns. The West Indies’ Under-19 side also aborted a tour in 2013 after an explosion near their hotel in the southern city of Chittagong. Chowdhury said the International Cricket Council is working on updated security protocol to deal with the problem globally. “It’s not just a problem of Bangladesh. Many developed countries in the world, who have strong security barriers, face some incidents too. Still, whenever we host an international series, we take special security measures. We have hosted many major ICC events, despite many challenges,” he said.