Rawalpindi ruled out for India tour
Pakistan's cricket chief on Tuesday said Rawalpindi has been dropped as a venue for the upcoming home series against India because the central city's stadium is not ready.
"We will not be able to finish the renovation work that includes the relaying of the outfield, so the matches scheduled for Rawalpindi will be shifted to other cities," Pakistan Cricket Board (PCB) chairman Ijaz Butt said.
Rawalpindi was scheduled to host the second of three Test series and the third match of the five limited-overs international match series.
Butt said Faisalabad or Multan, due to host one-day internationals during the India series, were likely replacements.
Rawalpindi's Pindi cricket stadium was also excluded from the list of venues for the Champions Trophy, which was to be held in September this year but was put off for 12 months due to security fears.
Pakistan's main concern remains to convince India that issues over safety should not stop the tourists visiting.
The Indian government's refusal to send its junior hockey team to Pakistan earlier this month raised fears that the cricket series might suffer the same fate.
The Board of Control for Cricket in India last week told the PCB it had sought New Delhi's clearance for the tour and would give further details early next month.
Butt said he hoped the tour would continue as scheduled and briefed the Indian High Commissioner Satya Pal about PCB's plans for the series.
"I am hopeful that India will tour and we are preparing for it," said Butt, who refused to disclose any details of his meeting -- his second with the Indian high commissioner in a week.
Butt added that he would travel to India early next month to allay the country's security concerns.
"Our first priority should be that they come to Pakistan as per schedule but in the worst scenario we have back up plans of playing the series at neutral venues," said Butt.
Pakistan is in talks with the organisers in the United Arab Emirates to host the India series in case the need arises.