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New Zealand team to continue tour of England despite ‘bomb threat’, had snubbed Pakistan earlier over security concerns

An hour before the start of the 1st ODI match with Pakistan at Rawalpindi on September 17, the New Zealand cricket team had decided to ‘abandon’ their tour of Pakistan over security concerns.

Despite receiving a bomb threat, the New Zealand Women’s cricket team (also called White Ferns) is likely to play their third ODI against England on Tuesday (September 21), reported Espn Cricinfo.

According to the cricket news website, a member of the White Ferns’ management had received the threat about a bomb being planted at their hotel. It was also told that a bomb would be placed on the team flight during their journey back to New Zealand. Following the threat, the team announced a lockdown yesterday (September 20) and the New Zealand cricket Board began an investigation into the case. Meanwhile, police, counter-terrorism and other law enforcement agencies initiated a probe into the matter.

It was speculated that the New Zealand Women’s cricket team did not train earlier due to the bomb scare and the reluctance of some of the cricketers. However, a spokesperson for the team clarified that there was no scheduled training session as it was a travelling day.

“As has been reported, the ECB has received a threatening email relating to NZC. Although this did not specifically reference the White Ferns it was treated seriously, investigated, and deemed not credible. The White Ferns have now arrived in Leicester and, as a precaution, security around them has been boosted,” he added.

The NZC spokesperson emphasised that the ‘bomb scare’ was a hoax. He remarked, “Reports their training has been cancelled are false. They were not scheduled to train today as it was a travelling day. NZC will not be commenting further on the matter.” The White Ferns will now play their third ODI against England at the Grace Road in Leicester. The remaining two ODIs in the 5-match series are scheduled to take place in Derby and Canterbury. The England Women’s team is leading the series by 2-0.

England, New Zeland had called off Pakistan tour over security concerns

Ahead of the upcoming T20 World Cup in UAE, the England Men’s team was scheduled to play 2 back-to-back T20Is on October 13 and 14 in Pakistan. On the other hand, the Women’s team was scheduled to play 2 T20Is and 3 ODIs. On Monday (September 20) night, the ECB decided to pull a plug on their tour of October, leaving Pakistanis high and dry.

“The mental and physical well-being of our players and support staff remains our highest priority and this is even more critical given the times we are currently living in. We know there are increasing concerns about travelling to the region and believe that going ahead will add further pressure to a playing group who have already coped with a long period of operating in restricted Covid environments,” the ECB said in its statement while pulling out from the Pakistani tour.

An hour before the start of the 1st ODI match with Pakistan at Rawalpindi on September 17, the New Zealand cricket team had decided to ‘abandon’ their tour of Pakistan over security concerns. The ‘B’ team of New Zealand was scheduled to play a 3-match ODI series against Pakistan in Rawalpindi, followed by a 5-match T20 series against them in Lahore.

“Following an escalation in the New Zealand Government threat levels for Pakistan, and advice from NZC security advisors on the ground, it has been decided the BLACKCAPS will not continue with the tour. Arrangements are now being made for the team’s departure,” read a statement posted on the website of the New Zealand Cricket Board. 

Pakistanis wishe death to New Zealand team

After NZC had called off the series, several Pakistani cricket fans took to Twitter to express their anger. However, some of them went to the extent of wishing death upon the cricketers of the New Zealand team. One Pakistani user (@jani_karam) wrote, “Allah kary Nz ky players ka jahaz crush hojay ahr sab players mar jy (Let Allah crush the plane carrying New Zealand players and ensure their death)”

Screengrab of the contentious tweet

Following outrage over the remark, the Twitter user locked his profile. The contentious tweet is in violation of guidelines laid down by the microblogging site. At the time of writing, it could not be ascertained whether the tweet had been deleted.

Screengrab of the contentious tweet

Another Pakistani named Faheem Khan had written, “We need to bomb the entire team of New Zealand. This is what they deserve for foiling Pakistan’s plans within 30 minutes.”

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OpIndia Staff
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