Pakistan captain Younis Khan
has said increasing security concerns, including the indefinite postponement of the tour to Bangladesh, will harm his team's growth in general and specifically harm preparations for the ODI series against Australia next month.
"The decision has deprived us of some valuable cricket once again," Younis was quoted by AFP
Pakistan were originally scheduled to play two Twenty20 internationals and five ODIs between March 10 and March 22 but the Bangladesh government suspended
all future tours by foreign teams in the aftermath of an armed mutiny by border guards.
Pakistan's home Test series against Sri Lanka was terminated abruptly following an attack on the Sri Lankan team in Lahore in which eight people, including six policemen, were killed and seven players injured.
"It is a great setback especially when we needed practice for the Australia series," Younis said. "We had some newcomers in the team for Bangladesh whom we wanted to try out before that but now that the tour is off we have lost that opportunity and it is demoralising for a captain. Our team is unfortunately very short on cricket and if mishaps like this happen, our performance will decline in important series."
Pakistan have been at the receiving end of several tour suspensions and cancellations, with West Indies calling off a proposed tour and India, following a government directive, opting not to tour Pakistan in the aftermath of the Mumbai attacks.
Younis, however, was hopeful of some international cricket later in the year. "We have suffered a lot from tour cancellations, mainly the India and Australia series, so we badly need cricket. I hope we get some good cricket later in the year," he said.
Pakistan take on Australia - who suspended their tour of Pakistan in March 2008 citing security concerns - in five ODIs and one Twenty20 international in Dubai and Abu Dhabi between April 22 and May 7. The encounter will be followed by the World Twenty20 which will take place in England in June.