Pakistan Cricket Board, on Wednesday, announced their home series against South Africa. The Proteas will visit Pakistan next month for two Tests and three T20Is. Both the Tests will be a part of the ongoing ICC World Test Championship. The upcoming series will be South Africa’s first in Pakistan in 14 years.
South Africa will arrive in Karachi on 16 January before the tour gets underway on 26 January in the same city. Both the teams will then travel to Rawalpindi where the second Test will be held from 4-8 February. The caravan will later move to Lahore where the Gaddafi Stadium will host all the three T20Is, which are scheduled for 11, 13 and 14 February.
As expected, the visitors will be observing an isolation period after landing in Karachi. It will be followed by training sessions and play intra-squad practice matches before the Test series starts.
“South Africa confirming a tour to Pakistan and playing matches at the three major centres is a fabulous news for Pakistan cricket and its fans. South Africa is one of the most popular sides in Pakistan even though they last played here in 2007, but the fans have been following their performances closely and now look forward to welcoming them,” PCB Director – International Zakir Khan said.
“It’s pleasing to see so many countries making a return to Pakistan – a proud, cricket-loving nation. Cricket South Africa is delighted to be counted among them. As someone who has toured the country on more than one occasion back in my playing days, I know how much passion the people of Pakistan have for the game as well as the love and support that the Proteas enjoy there as a team,” said CSA Director of Cricket Graeme Smith.
South Africa’s last visit to Pakistan had come way back in 2007 when they won the Karachi Test by 160 runs to clinch the series 1-0. The subsequent series in 2010 and 2013 were played in the United Arab Emirates as Pakistan were forced to conduct their home games in the gulf nation following the terrorist attack on Sri Lankan team bus in Lahore in 2009.
Pakistan will be desperate to win the upcoming Test series not only to move up the ladder in the Test Championship but also end their long wait for a series win against the Proteas. Pakistan’s only Test series win against South Africa came in 2003.
Pakistan have a dismal record in T20Is too against the Proteas. Both the teams have previously played the two series in the United Arab Emirates and South Africa won both the series.
South Africa’s tour of Pakistan schedule:
26-30 Jan – 1st Test, Karachi
4-8 Feb – 2nd Test, Rawalpindi
11 Feb – 1st T20I, Lahore
13 Feb – 2nd T20I, Lahore
14 Feb – 3rd T20I, Lahore