It will prove a formidable confidence building measure, he says

Pakistan President Asif Ali Zardari on Wednesday expressed the hope that resumption of cricketing ties with India would prove to be a formidable confidence building measure and a way forward to encouraging people-to-people contact.

Mr. Zardari’s views came in a letter to Prime Minister Manmohan Singh, sent through the Pakistan High Commission in New Delhi. He recalled discussing resumption of cricket ties with Dr. Singh during his visit to India in April.

“I am glad to learn that the Cricket Boards of Pakistan and India have agreed to resume cricket matches after a gap of five years. I am sanguine that cricket matches between our two countries would prove to be a formidable confidence building measure and a way forward towards encouraging people-to-people contacts. Undoubtedly, it would add to the positive atmosphere which has been witnessed by the two countries after resumption of the bilateral dialogue,” he said.

On Monday, the Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) invited Pakistan for a series later this year.

This would be the first series between the two countries in five years though both teams had played each other in the World Cup and other international fixtures in between.

Mr. Zardari, as Patron-in-Chief of the Pakistan Cricket Board, held a meeting with chairman Mohammad Zaka Ashraf on Tuesday. Mr. Ashraf briefed the President about his visit to India after which the BCCI announced its decision.

The BCCI’s decision has been hugely welcomed in Pakistan which matches Indian obsession with cricket.