KARACHI: Former Pakistan captain Ramiz Raja said Sunday the troubled nation had done enough to reassure the world that cricket was not a target for terrorists after it was stripped of the Champions Trophy.
The International Cricket Council, meeting in Perth, Australia, decided to relocate the 2009 tournament away from Pakistan due to lingering security fears.
But a disappointed Raja said: "I think Pakistan has done enough to tell the world that cricket is not targeted in the country," referring to Pakistan's hosting of the Asia Cup last year. Pakistan also hosted Sri Lanka for three one-day internationals last month.
"The passion of the game has been badly hit by teams not touring Pakistan," said Raja of foreign teams not touring Pakistan over security fears.
The ICC postponed the Champions Trophy in Pakistan in September over security concerns -- the same reason given by Australia for not playing a Test series here last March.
And in December the Indian cricket board cancelled a tour of Pakistan scheduled for January and February on instructions from the government in the wake of November's Mumbai attacks.
Raja blamed the Pakistan Cricket Board (PCB) for confusing decision-makers.
"While the PCB wanted to host the Champions Trophy, they insisted to host Australia on a neutral venue in April. That must have confused the decision-makers," said Raja.
Australia are scheduled to play five one-day internationals against Pakistan, a series likely to be relocated to a neutral venue.
Sri Lanka is the alternative venue for the Champions Trophy and ICC board chief executive Haroon Lorgat said a final decision would be made before the next ICC board meeting in April.
Former paceman Sarfraz Nawaz blamed India and the ICC for shifting the Trophy from Pakistan.
"India is using its clout at the international level and they must have pressurised English (speaking) countries not to tour Pakistan," Nawaz, who has played 55 Tests for Pakistan, told a foreign news agency.
Nawaz said the ICC relocated the event "without having a security assessment."