Pakistan security still major worry

PUBLISHED : Friday, 30 May, 2008, 12:00am
UPDATED : Friday, 30 May, 2008, 12:00am

Hong Kong has asked the Pakistan Cricket Board (PCB) if it could provide security for the 15-strong squad in the run-up to next month's Asia Cup in Karachi.

While the PCB has promised stringent security measures will be in place for the duration of the Asia Cup, from June 24-July 6, Hong Kong will be going earlier for a two-week build-up.

The squad, captained by Tabarak Dar, are due to leave on June 10 so they can play four warm-up matches before the Asia Cup begins. But concerns about the volatile political situation in the country's troubled commercial capital prompted Hong Kong to request the PCB for a security detail to guard the team.

'We had originally planned to go to Lahore for the two-week build-up prior to the Asia Cup. But we are now thinking of going straight to Karachi and have approached the Pakistan Cricket Board to see if they can provide security for us,' Hong Kong coach Aftab Habib said.'During the Asia Cup, all teams will be given security, but since we are going there earlier, we want to find out if everything can be in place for us beforehand.'

Karachi has been the scene of violent unrest in recent months.

Hong Kong went on a 10-day training trip to Lahore earlier this month. The original plan was to return to the National Cricket Academy in Lahore in the run-up to the Asia Cup, but Habib said he would prefer to go direct to Karachi.