New Zealand will tour Pakistan for the first time in 18 years to play three One-day Internationals and five Twenty20 Internationals, cricket boards of both countries said on Thursday.
The Pakistan Cricket Board (PCB) said New Zealand will tour Pakistan for the first time since 2003 starting from Sept 17, with all matches split between Rawalpindi and Lahore.
A bomb blast outside the New Zealand team’s hotel in Karachi in 2002 cut short the Black Caps’ last Test tour of Pakistan, but they visited again for an ODI series the following year.
Top teams have avoided touring Pakistan citing security concerns after the 2009 attack on a bus carrying Sri Lanka cricketers to the Gaddafi Stadium in Lahore.
“Series against a top-ranked side like New Zealand will be a perfect start to a mouth-watering and highly exciting home season of red and white-ball cricket,” PCB chief executive Wasim Khan said in a statement.
The visit by Kane Williamson’s team “will reinforce Pakistan’s status as a safe and secure country,” Khan said.
While Rawalpindi’s Pindi Cricket Stadium will host all three ODIs, the Gaddafi Stadium in Lahore will be the venue for the T20 series with New Zealand — the current ICC World Test Championship champions — to visit Pakistan again next year for a red-ball series.
New Zealand, who last toured Pakistan in late 2003, finished runners-up in the 2019 50-overs World Cup and are also the reigning world test champions. Pakistan will also host England and West Indies later this year, while Australia is scheduled to visit early next year.