After more than 20 years, the Australian cricket team is finally going back to Pakistan next year.
The Australian cricket team is going back to Pakistan for the first time since 1998 after Cricket Australia confirmed a seven-match tour in 2022.
As the countdown begins to the two nations’ sudden-death T20 World Cup semi-final, CA announced on Monday that Australia would play three Tests, three one-day internationals and a T20 in March and April of next year.
More details are expected to be revealed on Monday evening (AEDT).
Australia take on Pakistan in the ICC T20 World Cup semi-finals on Friday (1am AEDT) on Kayo. New to Kayo? Start your free trial today.
It will be Australia’s first visit to Pakistan since the 1998-99 series, which featured Mark Taylor’s epic innings of 334 not out in the second Test at Peshawar.
Australia won the Test series 1-0 and the ODI series 3-0.
PCB chairman Ramiz Raja called the three-Test series a “connoisseurs delight”.
“It pleases me no end that we’ll be engaged in a three-Test match series, connoisseurs delight,” Raja said in a statement.
“Australia are one of the high-performing sides and them playing in our backyard for the first time after a gap of 24 years will be a special treat for the fans.
“Likewise, it will be a great opportunity for the Australia cricketers to not only play at our iconic venues but also feel and enjoy the respect, love and hospitality that this great country offers, something which most of their previous generation of cricketers missed out by playing offshore.”
Current Test captain Tim Paine and national selection chair George Bailey both featured in a World XI that played three T20s in the country in mid-2017 as Pakistan began opening up to world cricket again.
Cricket Australia chief executive Nick Hockley said the organisation would “continue to work closely over the coming months to finalise the necessary operations, logistics, security and COVID-19 protocols”.
“The safety and welfare of our players and staff remains our number one priority, and we will continue to work with the PCB and relevant agencies to ensure that appropriate and sufficient arrangements are put in place for the tour,” he said.
Confirmation of Australia’s tour comes after both England and New Zealand abandoned trips to Pakistan this year citing security concerns, including an alert of a possible attack outside Rawalpindi Stadium.
At the time, Pakistan Cricket Board chairman Ramiz Raja urged CA to be “responsible” and follow through with their plans to tour.
Security concerns have kept Pakistan’s Test opponents from touring in the years since the attack on the Sri Lanka national cricket team that took place in Lahore in 2009.
After a six-year hiatus from hosting touring teams, Pakistan welcomed Zimbabwe in 2015.
Eight years on from the Lahore attack, Sri Lanka played one match in Pakistan in October of 2017 before returning for a full series in 2019.
Australia’s tour dates of Pakistan are:
First Test — March 3-7, Karachi
Second Test — March 12-16, Rawalpindi
Third Test — March 21-25, Lahore
First ODI — March 29, Lahore
Second ODI — March 31, Lahore
Third ODI — April 2, Lahore
T20I — April 5, Lahore