Rawalpindi [Pakistan], September 17 (ANI): Former Pakistan all-rounder Shahid Afridi on Friday questioned New Zealand's decision to abandon the tour of Pakistan due to the New Zealand government's security alert. He went on to ask if NZC realised the impact of such a decision.
"On a HOAX threat you have called-off the tour despite all assurances!! @BLACKCAPS
do you understand the IMPACT of your decision?" Afridi tweeted.
Former West Indies skipper Daren Sammy wrote: "Disappointed waking up to the news of the cancellation of the Pakistan Vs New Zealand series because of security issues. Over the last 6 years playing and visiting Pakistan has been one of the most enjoyable experiences. I've always felt safe. this is a massive blow to Pakistan."
"It is making me more sad thinking about how upset our fans must be after receiving this news. To the world, I want to repeat our country is safe for cricket. To our fans, We the Pakistan team promise we will turn these sad feelings into happy ones," Pakistan fast bowler Hassan Ali tweeted.
Pakistan Prime Minister Imran Khan spoke to New Zealand counterpart Jacinda Ardern on Friday before Blackcaps announced that they are abandoning their tour of Pakistan.
Imran Khan assured Ardern that Pakistan has one of the best intelligence systems in the world and that no security threat of any kind exists for the visiting team but New Zealand Cricket (NZC) still decided to return home after the NZ government security alert.
New Zealand was slated to play their first match on Pakistan soil since 2003. The side was to play Pakistan on Friday in the first of three ODIs in Rawalpindi, before moving to Lahore for a five-match T20 series.
NZC had said arrangements are now being made for the team's departure. New Zealand Cricket Players Association chief executive Heath Mills echoed NZC chief executive David White's sentiments. "We've been across this process throughout and are fully supportive of the decision. The players are in good hands; they're safe -- and everyone's acting in their best interests," he said.
NZC said it will not comment on the details of the security threat nor the updated arrangements for the departing squad. (ANI)