Thatscricket - ODI Series - India~~s tour of Pakistan- Indian cricket team to fly out from Islamabad

Published: Monday, March 29, 2004, 20:17 [IST]
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Lahore:The Indian cricket team has been given special permission to fly out of Islamabad instead of Lahore after the completion of the high-profile tour of Pakistan on April 18.

The team was earlier scheduled to fly out of Pakistan from Lahore on April 18 after playing the third and final Test match at Rawalpindi but the Civil Aviation authorities have now granted the necessary permission to leave from Islamabad, a 30-minute drive from Rawalpindi.

"We have been told by the Pakistan Cricket Board (PCB) that we can now fly out from Islamabad. The Civil Aviation department has given the necessary permission," Indian team manager Ratnakar Shetty said.

"It is good for the team because earlier they would have had to go to Lahore after the last match in Rawalpindi to take a flight back home. It is now upto the Indian Airlines to work out the schedule," he said.

Asked whether the Indian cricketers were allowed to venture out of their hotels, Shetty said they were under no restriction to go out of their hotel but would have to inform the security coordinators in advance so that necessary arrangements could be made.

The Indian team is staying at the Pearl Continental, a five-star hotel located in the heart of the city, and tight security arrangements have been made inside the hotel premises as well as the adjoining area.

Sports journalists, covering the historic series, were thoroughly frisked before they could make their way to the conference hall to attend Indian skipper Sourav Ganguly's press conference. Direct telephone access to the players' room has been prohibited and all the calls are routed through the operators, giving cricketers the option to screen the calls.

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