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New Zealand cricket team in Pakistan for first tour in 18 years | Cricket News

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ISLAMABAD: The New Zealand cricket team arrived in Pakistan on Saturday for their first tour in 18 years, with the hitting coach. Thilan Samaraweera returning to the country where he was shot in 2009.
Samaraweera was part of the Sri Lankan team that was attacked by militants near Gadaffi Stadium in Lahore in 2009.
Samaraweera was shot in the left thigh and took three months after surgery to return to the field. He has been working with the New Zealand team since 2019.
Those attacks led international teams to refuse to tour Pakistan, forcing them to play in neutral venues in the United Arab Emirates (UAE).
New Zealand also had to interrupt a tour of Pakistan in 2002, after a bomb exploded outside their team’s hotel in Karachi.
They played five one-day internationals again in 2003, their last tour of Pakistan.
On Saturday, the New Zealand team was transferred to their hotel in a bulletproof bus.
Alternate skipper Tom latham He said that he and his players were happy to be in Pakistan.
“Obviously, it’s very nice for Pakistan as a nation,” Latham said.
In the past six years, Pakistan has hosted Zimbabwe, South Africa, Bangladesh, the West Indies and Sri Lanka as security has improved in the country.
New Zealand will play three one-day internationals (September 17, 19, 21) in Rawalpindi, and five Twenty20 internationals (September 25, 26, 29, October 1 and 3) in Lahore.
The current New Zealand squad is weakened by the absence of eight of its best players, including captain Kane Williamson, who will play in the rescheduled Indian Premier League in the United Arab Emirates starting next week.
“For us, it’s just about going there and trying to adapt to the conditions,” Latham added.
“So another chance for the group and everyone is waiting for it,” he added.
Five members of the T20 team – Todd Astle, Mark Chapman, Martin Guptill, Daryl Mitchell and Ish Sodhi – are expected to arrive later Sunday.
As part of Covid-19 precautions, the series will be played in front of a 25 percent audience, all of whom must be vaccinated to attend.
NZ ODI Team: Tom Latham (Captain), Finn Allen, Hamish Bennett, Tom Blundell, Doug Bracewell, Colin de Grandhomme, Jacob Duffy, Matt Henry, Scott Kuggeleijn, Cole McConchie, Henry Nicholls, Ajaz Patel, Rachin Ravindra, Blair Tickner , Will Young.





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