ISLAMABAD: The Pakistani men’s cricket team will be playing 10 additional Twenty20 International (T20I) matches against New Zealand in the 2023-24 season, announced the country’s cricket board on Tuesday, to prepare themselves for the ICC Men’s T20 World Cup next year.
Following three ICC World Test Championship matches in Australia from December 14 to January 7, Pakistan will travel to New Zealand for five T20Is to kickstart their T20 World Cup preparations. These matches will be held from January 12-21.
In turn, New Zealand will visit Pakistan in April 2024 for five T20Is to fill the vacant window, details of which will be released later.
“The Pakistan Cricket Board today announced its men’s side will play 10 additional T20Is against New Zealand in the 2023-24 season as part of its strategic decision to provide the best preparation opportunities for the ICC Men’s T20 World Cup 2024,” the Pakistan Cricket Board (PCB) said in the statement.
“The additional series will mean that in the lead-up to the T20 World Cup, to be co-hosted by the West Indies and the USA in June 2024, Pakistan will play 19 T20Is (10 vs New Zealand, three vs the Netherlands, two vs Ireland and four vs England).”
On top of the 19 international matches, the PCB will also host the Pakistan Super League 2024 in February and March 2024.
To schedule the additional T20Is, the PCB, in consultation with Cricket West Indies and New Zealand Cricket, has made slight changes to its Future Tours Program 2023-2025.
“The two ICC World Test Championship fixtures against the West Indies, originally planned in Pakistan in February 2024, will now be held in January 2025, and likewise, Pakistan’s tour to New Zealand for three ODIs and five T20Is, originally scheduled in January 2025, will now take place in April 2025,” the statement added.
Pakistan and New Zealand recently played a highly competitive and entertaining five-match T20I series in April in Lahore and Rawalpindi, which ended in a two-all draw.
Prior to the ICC Men’s T20 World Cup 2022 in Australia, Pakistan had featured and won the T20I series in Christchurch with Bangladesh as the third side.
New Zealand and Pakistan are ranked third and fourth, respectively, in the ICC T20I Team Rankings with just two points separating them.
Jan 12 – 1st T20I, Auckland
Jan 14 – 2nd T20I, Hamilton
Jan 17 – 3rd T20I, Dunedin
Jan 19 – 4th T20I, Christchurch
Jan 21 – 5th T20I, Christchurch