Aussie officials in Dubai to review security ahead of series against Pak

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Sydney, Mar 5 (ANI): Cricket Australia has sent its officials to Dubai for a safety inspection for the one-day series next month against Pakistan, days after the Sri Lankan tean was fired upon in Lahore.

Cricket Australia officials, including Michael Brown and Australian Cricketers' Association chief Paul Marsh are in Dubai for the pre-tour inspection, Australia captain Ricky Ponting said.

"Brute (team manager Steve Bernard) left us last night to go to Dubai to do the regular pre-tour visit," Ponting said.

"I don't know if it's going to affect that series yet. We've just got to I guess give ourselves a couple of days or as much time as we need to learn more about what has happened over there and get to the bottom of that and find out what effect it will have on the bigger picture of world cricket."

Asked about the criticism Australia has received in recent years for not touring Pakistan, Ponting said: "It doesn't justify anything."

"Our security people over the last couple of years have advised us that it's probably not right and safe for us to tour there," he said.

"That's before anyone has been targeted like this team have now. With Sri Lanka what happened was well planned and they were made targets," Ponting said.

The skipper said he was unaware of any plans for Australia to play their rescheduled Test series against Pakistan in England next year, but added neutral venues would continue to be considered.

Up to 12 masked gunmen attacked the Lankan team's convoy en route to the Gaddafi Stadium for the second Test against Pakistan. At least eight people were killed and seven Lankan team members wounded after the terrorists opened fire on the bus, using rockets, hand grenades and automatic weapons

Several Australians who were travelling in the convoy of vehicles, including umpires Steve Davis and Simon Taufel, Sri Lanka coach Trevor Bayliss and fitness staff David Dwyer and Jade Roberts, were unhurt. (ANI)

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