Pakistan desperate for Aussie Test tour

Steve Larkin
Azhar Ali of Pakistan is hopeful Australia will tour his country in 2022

Pakistan is desperate for Australia's Test cricketers to end their two-decade absence from the country, captain Azhar Ali says.

Australia haven't toured Pakistan since 1998 because of safety concerns.

But Azhar hopes an Australian return to Pakistan will come in a tour slated for February 2022.

"I am hopeful, we are all hopeful, because a lot of positive things (have) happened lately," Azhar said after Australia completed a 2-0 Test series win in Adelaide on Monday.

Cricket Australia chief Kevin Roberts and the organisation's security contingent visited Pakistan last September.

On return, Roberts refused to commit Australia to the February, 2022, tour scheduled to include two Tests, three one-dayers and three Twenty20 games.

No nation has played a Test match in Pakistan since Sri Lanka in 2009 in a series cut short when the visitors' bus was shot at by a dozen gunmen in Lahore.

Sri Lanka will return to Pakistan for a Test series starting on December 11.

"After that, hopefully other teams will see that Pakistan is safe to play," Azhar said.

"And all Pakistanis are hungry to watch international cricket at home.

"We in Pakistan, everyone follows cricket and they love to see all the international teams coming to Pakistan.

"And hopefully this (Sri Lankan series) is just the start and we are going to see a lot of teams coming."

Azhar said despite the current series whitewash, the Australian tour was crucial for the development of Pakistani cricket.

Pakistan last toured Australia in 2016/17, after a six years absence.

"Players who come here more and play in these conditions will get a lot of benefit," he said.

"You have to always consider that there won't be any conditions like this in Pakistan, the surfaces are different.

"These are the best batting conditions anywhere in the world because there is even bounce.

"If you get used to the bounce and pace, you have seen players from Pakistan, they can score runs here."