India-Pakistan cricket series on PM Modi-Sharif agenda?

The high-profile series was put on the back-burner at the moment by Modi's government. 

India-Pakistan cricket series on PM Modi-Sharif agenda?

New Delhi: PM Narendra Modi on Friday surprised his critics, supporters and even the media on Christmas Day with announcement of his surprise Pakistan visit.

Mr. Modi, who was in Afghanistan to inaugurate their India-funded Parliament, stated he would stopover in Lahore before returning to Delhi.

Apart from it being the auspicious occasion of Christmas, December 25 is also the birthday of the Pakistan PM.

Whether the India-Pakistan cricket series will be part of the discussions is not yet clear.

The high-profile series has been put on the back-burner at the moment by Modi's government.

Mr. Sharif has given his clearance and the BCCI and PCB are willing to work out the logistics for the series that was expected to be played at a neutral venue like Sri Lanka.

The chairman of Pakistan Cricket Board (PCB), Shahryar Khan, had earlier hinted that the much-anticipated proposed bilateral series between arch-rivals India and Pakistan is not going to happen, at least in near future.

"It is impossible to hold the series now as valuable time has gone. But we will now wait and see when the Indian Board tells us they have got clearance from their government to play with us. If the clearance comes from the Indians, then we can look at finding a window to play a bilateral series sometime in 2016,” Khan was quoted as saying by India.com.

Whether Modi will give a special Christmas gift to cricket lovers remains to be seen, however knowing the Indian PM's appetite for foreign policy risks, one cannot rule out an announcement on this front later in the day.

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