‘Terrible atmosphere’: PM Imran rules out bilateral cricket series with India under Modi govt

Prime Minister Imran Khan ruled out a bilateral series between Pakistan and India, saying that there will be a “terrible atmosphere” on the cricket ground whilst the Modi government is in power in India.

Speaking to former English batsman Michael Atherton in an interview for the Sky Sports ‘Out of Exile’ cricket documentary series, PM Imran spoke about the prospects of an India-Pakistan series taking place in future.

“You know Mike [Michael] I played two series in India. The first one I played was in 1971 and the two governments were trying to come close, and I can’t tell you the wonderful atmosphere on the cricket field,” he said.

PM Imran said that the next time he went to India to play cricket was in 1987 when tension existed between the two countries.

“This time I saw hostility in India I had never seen before,” said PM Imran. “Players were actually being pelted from the ground and you know I made them wear helmets while they were fielding on the boundary lines,” he added.

The premier said that when India came to Pakistan in 2005 to play a cricket series, the two governments were again trying “to come close” and Pakistani crowds welcomed the Indian team with open arms.

However, he ruled out a cricket series with India under the current Modi government in place.

“Right now, playing cricket in this atmosphere, with this sort of a government in power [Modi government]I would imagine it would be a terrible atmosphere on the cricket ground,” he said.