New Zealand to tour Pakistan after abandoning series

New Zealand cricket teamIANS

New Zealand will tour Pakistan twice from late December, the Pakistan Cricket Board said on Monday, more than a year after abandoning a series there over security concerns.

Pakistan authorities fumed after New Zealand abruptly withdrew from their first tour of the country in nearly two decades, minutes before the start of the first one-day international in Rawalpindi in September last year.

Monday's announcement follows visits by Australia and England in recent months, part of Pakistan's efforts to revive international cricket in the country after it was suspended following terrorist attacks on the Sri Lankan team in 2009.

"New Zealand is one of the high-performing sides and will provide opportunities to our youngsters to continue to watch and follow their favourite players in action," said PCB director of international cricket Zakir Khan.

England completed their first tour of Pakistan in 17 years earlier this month, playing seven Twenty20 internationals, and will return in December to play three Tests.

New Zealand will play two Tests and three ODIs from December 27 to January 15, before returning for five T20Is and five ODIs in April-May.

"The recent tours from Australia and England have left us in no doubt regarding the quality of the Pakistan side across all formats and the extent of the challenge that awaits us," said David White, New Zealand Cricket chief executive.