“No big deal” in officiating in Pakistan, says Ranmore Martinesz

It was not a “big deal” in officiating as an umpire in Pakistan, according to Ranmore Martinesz.

The 50-year-old umpire from Sri Lanka was one of the umpires for the Pakistan Super League (PSL) final in Pakistan earlier this month.

Ranmore Martinesz

Roshan Mahanama, the former ICC match-referee from Sri Lanka, also acted as an official (referee) for the final played at the Gadaffi Stadium. “I was invited by the Pakistan Cricket Board (PCB) and was looked after well by them”. Martinesz, speaking exclusively, said.

International matches are not played in Pakistan (though Zimbabwe visited there last year) following the attack on the bus and van carrying Sri Lanka players and the ICC match-officials in March 2009.

Ranmore Martinesz was non-committal on the resumption of cricket in Pakistan. “Look, I merely spent a few hours there and therefore cannot comment on safety in Pakistan, but during my (short) stay there, I found no security issues”.

On asked, whether do you recommend the Sri Lankan team to visit there, the Sri Lankan umpire said, “I cannot comment on this. It is for the Sri Lanka Cricket (SLC) board to say and decide”.

Martinesz himself was a fast-bowling all-rounder but had to give up playing  because of persistent back injury which cut short his career as a cricketer.

The PCB, in consultation with the ICC, is planning to host the matches against the World XI team there.

Giles Clarke, the ECB official, who, as an ICC board member, visited Pakistan before the last ICC meeting has indeed given a positive report. However, owing to the players’ concern and frequent bombings in the country, the bilateral series will take considerable time to happen there.

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