Islamabad: The Pakistan Cricket Board (PCB) has heaved a sigh of relief following the clearance of the visas of the national team members playing in the ICC World Cup 2011 by the Indian High Commission.
Pakistan are not scheduled to play any of their group-stage matches in India, but they will have to travel there if they qualify for the quarterfinals and semifinals
In a pre-emptive move, the PCB had submitted applications for visas for the entire squad and other board officials to the Indian High Commission in Islamabad to avoid any hassles later in the tournament.
“The Indian commission has cleared the issuance of visas for our team and that means that we will face no issues playing in India if we qualify for those matches,” the Daily Times quoted a PCB official, as saying.
Sources said the steps were taken in the wake of a recent visa issue with three Canadian players of Pakistan-origin. The board is not ready to take any chances in this regard, so top PCB officials have already completed the documentation process, sources added.
Although Pakistan have not played in India or any bilateral series with the Indians since the November 2008 Mumbai terror attacks, the PCB is pushing the Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) and the International Cricket Council (ICC) to pave the way for the resumption of bilateral ties at least at neutral venues.