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VVIP security cover for SA in Pakistan

September 24, 2003 15:46 IST

The Pakistan government will be providing VVIP security cover, normally given to visiting statesmen, to the South African players during their rescheduled tour of the country, South Africa Cricket chief Gerald Majola said on Wednesday.

In a radio interview on the national state broadcaster, SABC, Majola said South Africa's own security men would be travelling with the team to Pakistan to ensure the security of the players is not compromised.

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"We have decided to go ahead with a shortened tour because we now have a security plan in place that has been approved by Pakistan, South Africa and our own police service," he said.

"The VVIP security will be monitored on a regular basis by our own security people who will be travelling with the team during the tour."

South Africa, who had earlier pulled out of the tour citing security reasons, agreed on Tuesday to embark on the trip from October one after Pakistan removed Karachi and Peshawar from the itinerary.

The tour will now be restricted to one month and to three venues of Lahore, Faislabad and Rawalpindi. The matches will also be restricted to five one-day internationals and two Tests.

Meanwhile, South African captain Graeme Smith said his boys would try to perform to their potential during the tour.

"The conditions will not be normal with all the security people around. We, therefore, will have to make the best of the circumstances," Smith said.

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