Australia willing to reschedule Pak tour

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DUBAI, Mar 18 (UNI) Australia's postponed tour of Pakistan could be rescheduled as CA has assured that it will fulfil it's international commitment and is planning to invite PCB chief Nasim Ashraf.

''I have assured the PCB that Australia is committed to finding new dates,'' Cricket Australia (CA) chairman Creagh O'Connor said today.

''We are committed to the ICC principle that cricket will only develop as a genuine global sport if all nations play each other away and at home on a regular basis.'' Australia was scheduled for a two-month tour to Pakistan. But later CA postponed the tour following the security concerns in Pakistan after the assassination of former Prime Minister Benazir Bhutto.

O'Connor said he and Ashraf had already been involved in initial discussions at the International Cricket Council (ICC) meeting in Dubai regarding rescheduling the tour's matches.

However, CA chairman expressed his desire to invite Ashraf and have a formal meeting on the issue.

''It is clear from our initial discussion here in Dubai that we need to sit down and go through the technical issues on finding new dates with a fine tooth comb,'' chairman said.

''To that end, I have suggested we meet in Melbourne as soon as possible and we will organise dates once the current ICC meetings are finalised,'' he added.

He said the security departments which adviced CA not to go ahead with the Pakistan tour could also hold a few meetings with Ashraf.

''Dr Ashraf is also hoping to meet with security advisors and DFAT (Australian Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade) so as to gain a better understanding of CA's security concerns,'' O'Connor said.

UNI XC RAR CS AS1316

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