Women's World Cup Qualifier shifted from Lahore to South Africa

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Lahore, Jan 8 (UNI) The uncertain political situation in the country took its toll with the ICC today deciding to shift the Women's World Cup Qualifier event, scheduled to be staged here from February 18-24, to South Africa instead.

The tournament had originally been arranged to take place here last November but was postponed for security reasons until after the proposed election date of January 8. But with the rescheduling of that vote for February 18, the decision was made to move the event to South Africa.

The event involves eight teams- Bermuda, Ireland, the Netherlands, Pakistan, Papua New Guinea, Scotland, South Africa, and Zimbabwe- with the top two sides going forward to the ICC Women's World Cup in Australia next year.

The decision was arrived at following independent security reports and extensive discussions by ICC management and the ICC Women's Committee.

''It is unfortunate that the timing of the event ended up clashing with the elections and forcing us to change the venue,'' said ICC Chief Executive Malcolm Speed.

''I would like to thank all those from the Pakistan Cricket Board (PCB) who so enthusiastically embraced the opportunity to host this event. We remain committed to international cricket being played in Pakistan but, sadly, events beyond the control of the ICC and the PCB have conspired against us on this occasion,'' Speed said.

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