PCB chief Butt wants resumption of bilateral ties

Karachi: Pakistan Cricket Board chief Ijaz Butt on Tuesday once again expressed his desire to see resumption of bilateral cricket ties with India.

Butt told the media on returning from Bangladesh after attending a meeting of the Asian Cricket Council that resumption of bilateral ties with India depended entirely on the respective governments.

"The good thing is that both boards are willing to have bilateral matches but obviously both of us have to wait till clearance comes from the government level," Butt said.

The two countries have not played any bilateral matches since late 2007 when Pakistan last toured India.

India were supposed to tour Pakistan in early 2009 for a full Test series but it was cancelled by the Indian government in the aftermath of the Mumbai terror attacks.

The PCB has been pushing for resumption of bilateral ties as not playing India meant loss of valuable revenues for the board.

Butt was also confident that international cricket would soon return to Pakistan.

"We are expecting international cricket to return to Pakistan soon and we have been holding talks with the ICC and boards in this connection which I can`t disclose now," he stated.

Butt also rubbished speculations that the PCB`s relations with the Bangladesh cricket board were strained.

"No, we have cordial relations with the Bangladesh board and I have just returned from there and held fruitful talks with their cricket officials," he said.

Butt said that both countries planned to play a limited over series sometime next year and the dates and venues for it would be worked out soon.

On the ACC`s decision to award the 2012 Asia Cup to Bangladesh despite a strong bid by China, Butt said that facilities in China were still not good enough for international cricket.

On the other hand, the board`s director-general for cricket and Pakistan`s ambassador to China for cricket, Javed Miandad, today told the media in Lahore that China could prove to be a perfect neutral venue for Pakistan cricket.

"Until foreign teams are not willing to come to Pakistan, China can prove to be a good neutral venue for us. If Pakistan play there it will also go a long way in promoting cricket in China," Miandad said.