Islamabad: Pakistan Foreign Minister Shah Mehmood Qureshi has pitched for more cricket matches between India and Pakistan even as his country suffered a humiliating defeat in recent ICC World Cup match.
Talking to the media on his arrival at the Old Trafford stadium today on Sunday, he said cricket is very popular in the sub-continent and Prime Minister Imran Khan gave a new identity to the game of cricket in Pakistan."Pakistan and Indian team should play bilateral cricket in the larger interest of the sports and for the good of cricket," Radio Pakistan quoted Qureshi as saying.
India have prevented the men`s teams to contest in any bilateral series with Pakistan for the last six years following rise in tension between the two nations in wake of several attacks in the former country. India has accused Pakistan of harbouring terrorist groups and fuelling violence in the region.
Even recently after the February 14 Pulwama attack, BCCI, in a veiled reference to Pakistan, had requested ICC to sever ties with countries from which "terrorism emanates". Over 40 CRPF personnel were killed after a Pakistan-based terror group Jaish-e-Mohammed (JeM) terrorist rammed an IED laden vehicle into a CRPF convoy.
India defeated Pakistan by 89 runs on Sunday at Manchester in the ongoing ICC Men`s Cricket World Cup, and as a result, the Men in Blue maintain their unbeaten record against the arch-rivals in the World Cup.
On the political front too, Pakistan has called India for hold talks to end hostilities between neighbouring nations. Imran Khan wrote to Prime Minister Narendra Modi twice, inviting him for talks after latter`s election victory.
In Bishkek, Khan reiterated the need to resolve all outstanding issues with India through dialogue while talking to Russian news agency Sputnik on June 13. India, on the other hand, has maintained its stance that Pakistan needed to create a terror-free atmosphere first, conveying the same to Chinese President Xi Jinping during their bilateral on Thursday.