Bangladesh cricket team arrives in Pakistan for T20 series

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Pakistan Cricket Malik

Armed army personnel guard outside the Gaddafi Stadium in Lahore, Wednesday, Jan. 22, 2020 ahead of Pakistan cricket team's practice session. The three-match Twenty20 series between Pakistan and Bangladesh starts in Lahore from Friday.AP Photo/K.M. Chaudary)

ISLAMABAD (AP) — The Bangladesh cricket team arrived in Pakistan on Wednesday to play three Twenty20s in Lahore, its first tour of the country in almost 12 years.

Bangladesh last played in Pakistan in 2008 when it lost an ODI series 5-0 and a one-off Twenty20.

Lahore’s Gaddafi Stadium will host all the three T20s on Friday, Saturday and Monday.

The tour was only finalized last week when Bangladesh agreed to split the Twenty20 series and the two ICC World Test Championship matches in three phases after the national cricket boards reached consensus in Dubai in a meeting facilitated by International Cricket Council chairman Shashank Manohar.

Bangladesh will return for the first test at Rawalpindi from Feb. 7-11. After a break of almost two months, Bangladesh will play an ODI and the second test at Karachi on April 3-9.

Late last year, Sri Lanka also split its tour to Pakistan in two phases when it played a Twenty20 series in Lahore and then returned in December for two test matches at Rawalpindi and Karachi.

Bangladesh’s experienced wicketkeeper-batsman Mushfiqur Rahim is the only notable absentee from the tour after he pulled out of both Twenty20s and the two test matches due to security concerns.

Bangladesh's T20 team will be led by Mahmudullah and also include experienced opening batsman Tamim Iqbal.

The PCB has said it will no longer host its home international matches at a neutral venue as it insists Pakistan is now safe for foreign teams.

Sri Lanka’s test series was the first in Pakistan in over 10 years since terrorists attacked Sri Lanka's team bus in Lahore in 2009. The ambush left eight people killed and injured several Sri Lanka players.

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