Thursday Sep 09, 2021
The Pakistan Cricket Board (PCB) has not received any directives regarding the COVID-19 situation from the National Command and Operation Centre (NCOC) as the board is finalising preparations to host the New Zealand team for the ODI and Twenty20 series.
The NCOC had earlier allowed 25% of spectators to visit the stadiums in Rawalpindi and Lahore. Given the capacity of the stadiums, the NCOC had said 4,500 spectators can watch the live cricket action in the Pindi Stadium, while 5,500 individuals are allowed to visit the Gaddafi Stadium for the T20 matches.
The policy regarding the tickets of the matches of the upcoming ODI and T20 series is expected to be announced in the next couple of days, said the sources. The sources further said the PCB will keep in view the directives of the NCOC before putting the tickets on sale.
Only fully vaccinated individuals will be allowed to come to the stadiums.
The first ODI between Pakistan and New Zealand will be played at the Rawalpindi Stadium on September 17. The remaining two ODIs of the three-match series will take place on September 19 and 21.
The two teams will play their first T20 match at the Gaddafi Stadium on September 25. They will play five T20Is till October 3.
Meanwhile, the Civil Aviation Authority ( CAA) has exempted the New Zealand players from the COVID-19 testing upon arrival.
The New Zealand cricket team are visiting Pakistan for the first time for a cricket series after a gap of 18 years. New Zealand's tour to Pakistan was cut short in 2002 after a bomb explosion outside the team's hotel in Karachi. The Kiwis played a one-day series in 2003, but there have been no tours to Pakistan since.
The CAA has issued the special permit at the request of the Pakistan Cricket Board. "Approval is hereby accorded in respect of New Zealand cricket team, with details mentioned in the enclosed documents(s), for travel to Pakistan without Rapid Antigen Testing upon arrival in Pakistan," states the letter from the authority.
The New Zealand cricket team will fly to Pakistan on board a chartered plane of Bangladesh's Biman Bangladesh Airlines flight and land at the Islamabad airport on September 11.