Switch to Bangladesh, says Wasim

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The Independent Online

Wasim Akram has welcomed the idea of Pakistan playing their Test series against the West Indies in Bangladesh.

Rising political tensions between India and Pakistan forced the West Indies Cricket Board to pull the plug on their scheduled tour. The Executive Committee of the International Cricket Council recently agreed that any series cancelled due to security fears could be staged at a neutral venue and Wasim, who has many fond memories of Bangladesh, believes they will make an ideal host.

"If you do not play international cricket at any level your performance will go down obviously," he said, speaking in Dhaka, the Bangladesh capital. "The Pakistan Cricket Board is trying to host the series against West Indies at a neutral venue if they don't want to come to Pakistan."

Pakistan have arrived in Bangladesh for a two-Test tour and Wasim believes it will be a crucial period after an enforced three-month hiatus from international cricket following the war in Afghanistan. Wasim, 36, confirmed he will retire from playing after the 2003 World Cup in South Africa.