Farokh Engineer, former India wicketkeeper-batsman, has urged Pakistan’s captain-turned-Prime Minister Imran Khan to use his political clout and restore bilateral Test cricket between the two close neighbors.
It was in 2007 in Bangalore, India-Pakistan last time met in five-day international ODIs.
Engineer, a flamboyant player of the 1960s and 70s said “Imran Khan, he is the prime minister now. Hopefully, India and Pakistan will start a dialogue”.
Speaking during the inaugural Ranji Memorial Public Conversation in London this week, Farokh Engineer said “Basically we are the same people. Both countries have extremely talented cricketers and I, for one, would love to see that happen but unfortunately, the brakes are on”.
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Since the 2008 Mumbai terror attacks, bilateral cricket ties between India and Pakistan have been frozen amid political tensions and they only play each other in multi-nation events such as the World Cup.
Most major cricket nations have refused to tour Pakistan on security grounds since the 2009 terrorist attack on the Sri Lankan team bus near the Gaddafi Stadium in Lahore, forcing the country to play its ‘home’ matches in the United Arab Emirates.
Khan, one of the outstanding all-rounders of his generation, became Prime Minister earlier this year and Engineer believes he now has the authority to break the impasse.