Sunday, November 1, 2009

"Let Indo-Pak play in the US"

Union Minister Shashi Tharoor suggested that a series between India and Pakistan could be organised in a neutral venue like the US.
Cricketing ties have remained suspended after the 26/11 attacks in Mumbai last year.

Tharoor, who had his education in the US, said that country has many cricket enthusiasts and hoped an Indo-Pak cricket series could well be appreciated by the people there.

"We have a large patriotic population of both Indians and Pakistanis in the US and a handful of cricket enthusiasts as well. That's a very, very good way to organise cricket in third countries when terror strikes have stopped cricket between the two countries," Tharoor said.

"It will be terrific to see a baseball stadium in the US crowded for a cricket match, though the stadium will be small by cricket standards," the Minister of State of External Affairs said.

"There is a lot at stake in Indo-Pak rivalry as there is some historical baggage (of Partition)," he said, adding that this made an Indo-Pak series always "exciting".

Tharoor, who has co-authored a book 'Shadows Across the Playing Field' with former Pakistan Cricket Board chief Shaharyar Khan, recalled the resumption of Indo-Pak cricket in 2004 which was termed as a friendship tour. "For the first time so many cricket visas were given. The atmosphere was so good among fans," he said.

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