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26 Sep 2021
New Zealand coach Gary Stead has opened up about the team’s pulling out of the limited-overs tour of Pakistan at the last moment and has stated that it was out of their hands.
"That decision was out of our hands," Stead was quoted as saying by stuff.co.nz.
"I think they're okay. It was obviously unsettling and disappointing what happened in Pakistan and we certainly feel for the Pakistan cricket fraternity and fans," Stead added.
New Zealand had abandoned the tour a few minutes before the start of the first ODI against Pakistan citing security concerns. Later, England who were earlier slated to travel to Pakistan in October also cancelled their trip and the two sides subsequently faced a lot of backlash from former Pakistan cricketers and fans.
Talking about the World T20 fixture against Pakistan in Sharjah on October 26, Stead said that the side will take the clash as any other match. "Certainly, being that it's Pakistan, people will hype that up, but for us, it's no different to any other match we play against them," Stead said.
While the Blackcaps will be commencing their campaign against Pakistan, they will play India in the next match on October 31 in Dubai. The Kiwis will then face the two qualifiers on November 3 and 5 in Dubai and Sharjah respectively.
The Kane Williamson-led side will end the league stage against Afghanistan on November 7 in Abu Dhabi.