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ECB works out replacement teams for Twenty20, ODI series

Written by: Staff

London, Aug 25 (UNI) The England and Wales Cricket Board (ECB) has worked out a contingency plan for England to play against an international XI if Pakistan pull out of Monday's Twenty20 match at Bristol.

''The ECB has received approval from ICC to approach leading world players to form an international XI to play against England at Bristol on Monday in case of the unlikely eventuality of the England versus Pakistan game being unable to proceed,'' an ECB statement said.

The Pro40 match between Glamorgan and Nottinghanshire, which was to be played on Monday, has been rescheduled for Sunday in an effort to facilitate choice of players for the international side.

''For this reason and as a further safeguard, ECB, Nottinghamshire and Glamorgan have agreed that the NatWest Pro40 match scheduled for August 28 at Trent Bridge be re-scheduled to August 27 to allow a wide choice of players for the NatWest International XI -- should it be required,'' the statement said.

Pakistan threatened to boycott the remainder of their tour if Inzamam-ul-Haq was banned on charges of ball-tampering and bringing cricket into disrepute following their forfeiture of the fourth and final Test against England at The Oval.

A date for Inzamam's hearing will be announced on Friday following ICC Chief Executive Malcom Speed's arrival here late last night. Pakistan had expressed concerns about playing the ODI series before the hearing is complete.

The ECB added it had been in touch with ICC for a further contingency plan for the one-day series.

Reports said ECB is in discussions with a major nation, believed to be South Africa, with a view to replacing Pakistan for the NatWest Series if the need arises.

Sourh African coach Mickey Arthur has already said his team would be delighted to fill the gap after they abandoned their recent tour of Sri Lanka following the bombings in Colombo.

''ECB can also confirm that it has been in discussion with ICC and other full member boards to provide a further contingency plan for the NatWest series. These discussions are well advanced, but it is hoped that the Pakistan team will be able to fulfil its commitments,'' the ECB statement said.


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