No Big Bash for Pakistani players

KARACHI, (Reuters) – The Pakistan Cricket Board (PCB) have stopped three of their top players from playing in the Australian Big Bash League next month because it clashes with their national Twenty20 championship.

All-rounder Shahid Afridi, batsman Umar Akmal and off-spinner Saeed Ajmal had signed contracts to feature in the Big Bash, which begins on Dec. 7, but the PCB recently announced it would be holding Pakistan’s T20 event in the first 10 days of the month. “The Big Bash dates were clashing with our national event which is very important for us since the selectors have to assess the players form and fitness for the coming tour to India,” a PCB spokesman said yesterday.

Pakistan then tour India from Dec. 22 to play two T20 matches and three one-day internationals, the first bilateral series between the two countries in five years.

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