ICC delegation to assuage fears over CT security

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New Delhi, Aug 13 (UNI) The International Cricket Council's (ICC) representatives led by its chief Haroon Lorgat will travel to four participating nations to assuage safety fears over travelling to Pakistan for next month's Champions Trophy.

The ICC delegation would travel to Australia, New Zealand, South Africa and England, so as to convince players to play in Pakistan for the one-day event that begins on September 12, and brief them on the arrangements, an ICC statement said today.

Players from Australia, New Zealand, England and South Africa have been voicing their concern over the security in Pakistan and have expressed their reluctance to travel the strife-torn nation for the tournament.

The ICC formed a task force that visited Pakistan yesterday to take stalk of the arrangements in the country, which has witnessed a spate of suicide bombings over the past several months.

The sport's governing body removed Rawalpindi as a venue, while Lahore and Karachi were retained.

ICC chief Haroon Lorgat will head the group to England, while chief executive of the Federation of International Cricketers' Associations (FICA) Tim May and Pakistan's Australian coach Geoff Lawson will be included in the team that will visit Australia and New Zealand.

''Our desire is to ensure that every stakeholder is content with arrangements and is comfortable with the ICC Champions Trophy taking place in Pakistan,'' ICC president David Morgan said.

The statement added that the ICC would receive the feedback on August 20 in order to further fine tune the arrangements.

''We are committed to a safe and secure event in Pakistan,'' Morgan said. ''We believe these visits and the feedback we get from them will play a major role in us achieving those ends.'' Australia and New Zealand players were advised by their players' associations last month not to travel to Pakistan, after the South African players' body criticised the ICC decision not to move the tournament out of Pakistan.

The Champions Trophy which is regarded as another prestigious tournament after the World Cup has India, West Indies and Sri Lanka as the other teams taking part in it.

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