Afridi dismisses security concerns

DHARAMSALA (India) • Paul van Meekeren bagged four wickets to help the Netherlands notch a consolation 12-run win via the Duckworth-Lewis method in their final rain-affected match of cricket's World T20 in Dharamsala last night.

Left-hander Stephen Myburgh struck an 18-ball 27 to help the Netherlands post 59 for five in six overs and the bowlers did well to restrict Ireland to 47 for seven. Both teams are out of the tournament.

Earlier, Pakistan skipper Shahid Afridi brushed off concerns over security for his team at the World T20, saying he was looking forward to playing in front of India's raucous crowds.

The 36-year-old said his team had always been "physically and mentally" prepared for the tournament despite weeks of uncertainty over whether they would be allowed to travel to India, host of the World T20.

Pakistan only announced on Friday that it is sending the national team after receiving assurances from India following negotiations with its neighbour over security arrangements.

"We are cricketers and not politicians," Afridi told a press conference in Kolkata. "We have always enjoyed playing in India and have been loved by Indian crowds more than crowds back home in Pakistan.

"Cricket has always brought people together and I think politics should be kept away."

In his first comments since arriving with the team on Saturday night, Afridi said they were confident of success in their first outing against an unknown qualifier on Wednesday and the much-anticipated showdown against India on Saturday.

AGENCE FRANCE-PRESSE

A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on March 14, 2016, with the headline 'Afridi dismisses security concerns'. Print Edition | Subscribe