Karachi: Pakistan's efforts to fill a gap in their cricket schedule received a setback Monday when India turned down an offer to play a short three-match one-day series next month, officials said.
The Pakistan Cricket Board (PCB) had invited India for a three-match one-day series starting from March 12 after Australia's tour was reduced to 30 days from a planned 48 days.
"The president of the Indian cricket board, Sharad Pawar, called up and spoke to the (PCB) chairman Nasim Ashraf explaining the tour was not possible due to a hectic schedule of the Indian team," PCB spokesman Ahsan Hameed Malik said.
The PCB last week said they received positive signals from India over a short series, but the off-schedule matches were always unlikely as India, currently playing a triangular series in Australia, host South Africa.
Indian players are also due to feature in the inaugural Twenty20 Indian Premier League (IPL) from April to June, making it hard to squeeze a week for the series against Pakistan.
The BCCI has however promised to play a three-match series in Pakistan before the ICC (International Cricket Council) Champions Trophy, which Pakistan host in September and October this year.
The PCB now expects Australia to tour their troubled country despite security advice against playing here.
Australia are due to send a delegation to Pakistan to assess security arrangements before they confirm their tour which includes three Tests, five one-day internationals and a Twenty20 international.
Cricket Australia (CA) earlier this month agreed to send a security delegation and delayed the start of the tour from March 10 to March 29.