England to tour Pakistan next October; 1st time since 2005

Michael Vaughan. (AFP)
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Updated 19 November 2020

England to tour Pakistan next October; 1st time since 2005

  • Michael Vaughan was captain when England last toured Pakistan for three test matches and five one-day internationals

ISLAMABAD: England’s cricket team will play two Twenty20 Internationals in Karachi next October during its first tour to Pakistan since 2005.

The England and Wales Cricket Board on Wednesday said its squad will arrive in the southern port city on Oct. 12. After playing back-to-back Twenty20s on Oct. 14 and 15, both teams will fly to India on Oct. 16 for the T20 World Cup.

The ECB also announced a busy summer schedule with three Asian countries — Sri Lanka, Pakistan and India — all touring England.

Sri Lanka will play three ODIs in late June and July, followed by Pakistan’s tour comprising three ODIs and three Twenty20s. The English summer culminates with India playing five test matches in August and September.

England hosted West Indies and Pakistan earlier this year without fans, but it announced a ticket ballot on Wednesday for next summer’s home games. Potential spectators were promised a full refund in case the games need to be played without fans next year too.

“We had an amazing summer of international cricket this year with some memorable performances, and we know how much enjoyment it brought to people while staying at home,” EC CEO Tom Harrison said in a statement.

“Next year we’ve got another big international program to look forward to … It’s an exciting prospect for England fans, and while Covid means there’s still a great deal of uncertainty, we really hope to be able to welcome fans back into the grounds safely next year to bring that unique atmosphere to stadia across the country.”

Michael Vaughan was captain when England last toured Pakistan for three test matches and five one-day internationals.

Since then Pakistan has twice hosted England — in 2012 and 2015 — in the United Arab Emirates due to security concerns over traveling to Pakistan. Test cricket returned to the country after more than 10 years when Sri Lanka toured Pakistan late last year. International cricket was halted in Pakistan after the Sri Lanka cricket team bus was targeted in a terrorist attack in March 2009.

Despite international travel restrictions during the COVID-19 pandemic this year, Pakistan was able to tour England and play three test matches and three Twenty20s in Manchester.

“As was demonstrated this summer, we have a strong relationship with the PCB and the ECB is delighted to be able to play our part in ensuring the safe return of international cricket to this wonderful nation of passionate cricket fans,” Harrison said.

Harrison said that the ECB is working closely with the Pakistan Cricket Board to ensure safety and security of its team and “of course the situation regarding the fast-moving and ever-changing COVID-19 pandemic.”

The PCB expects England’s short tour will showcase Pakistan’s ability to host international matches and will encourage the visitors for their tour to Pakistan in 2022-23 season.

Golf Saudi strikes partnership with the Club Managers Association of Europe

Updated 30 November 2020

Golf Saudi strikes partnership with the Club Managers Association of Europe

  • Educational program will be tailored to support Saudis’ career pathway in and through golf

RIYADH: Golf Saudi and the Club Managers Association of Europe (CMAE) have signed an ambitious new partnership to work together to roll out a certified Arabic language educational program. This is the first of its kind, aimed at encouraging Saudi nationals to pursue a career in golf.

CMAE will set up an education platform in Saudi Arabia, drawing on its industry-renowned approach, to assist Golf Saudi in developing the domestic golf talent pool and ultimately creating new Saudi national certified club managers.

The association is a nonprofit making professional body with members involved in the management of sports clubs, health and fitness clubs and leisure, city and dining clubs in Europe, the Middle East and North Africa.

Commenting on the partnership, CMAE’s director of education, Torbjörn Johansson, said: “Golf Saudi’s pursuit of creating a progressive domestic golf market is asking some big questions of the industry and leading organizations. The domestic plans to not only train up but also equip aspiring talent are a major step and CMAE is proud to be a partner and on-hand to provide the tools and analytic expertise.” 

The CEO of Golf Saudi, Majed Al-Sorour, said: “Our partnership with CMAE is incredibly important for Golf Saudi, but also for the golf industry at large. This is only possible if we are able to upskill our domestic workforce. Golf is good for business and can provide a direct boost to the Kingdom’s GDP, as well as providing lucrative jobs and creating new enterprise. These are exciting times for the golf industry in Saudi Arabia and this agreement with the CMAE helps us to develop a world-class training program that will support young Saudi adults in unlocking the full potential of their future career paths within the golf industry.”

Golf Saudi, a subsidiary of the Saudi Golf Federation, is committed to delivering a national development program that transforms the golfing landscape and aims to create 3,700 jobs by 2030.

Since its formation in 2018, Golf Saudi has embarked on an ambitious national golf strategy, which has worked to support the Kingdom’s impressive Vision 2030. This agreement recognizes the importance of training the next generation of Saudis to meet expected future demand, particularly from international tourists, enhancing Saudi Arabia as a golfing destination.