Islamabad:Rawalpindi will not host its scheduled matches during India's tour of Pakistan in January due to delays in renovations at the Rawalpindi Cricket Stadium.
"We will not be able to finish the renovation work that includes the relaying of the outfield," PCB chairman Ejaz Butt said on Tuesday.
Rawalpindi was originally to host the second Test and third limited-overs international of India's Jan. 4 to Feb. 19 tour, which includes three Test matches, five one-day internationals and a Twenty20 international.
"We have couple of other venues in mind and will shift Rawalpindi matches there," Butt said.
Faisalabad and Multan, which are slated to host one-day internationals during the India series, are the likely venues for the second Test.
Rawalpindi was to host Champions Trophy matches in September before the International Cricket Council reduced the biennial event to two cities - Lahore and Karachi. The limited-overs tournament was eventually postponed until next year after five participating countries expressed security reservations.
Butt hoped the arrival of the Indian cricket team in January will mark a return of international cricket to Pakistan.
January's tour of Pakistan is still not a certainty after the Indian government barred its field hockey team from a scheduled five-match visit earlier this month due to security concerns.
Butt said he will travel to meet with Board of Control for Cricket in India officials early next month to reassure them ahead of the tour. The BCCI has also sought clearance from its government for the tour, and Butt said that PCB has not set any cutoff time.
"When we want the series to go as planned why should we set any cut off time?" Butt said.
The PCB has lined up the neutral venues of Sharjah, Abu Dhabi and Dubai, UAE for the India series should the team fail to receive government clearance to travel to Pakistan.
Butt met with the Indian High Commissioner in Islamabad on Tuesday, but refused to give details. It was the second meeting between the pair this month.
"No comments," Butt said when asked what the meeting was about.
Pakistan assistant coach Aaqib Javed said the series against India should go as planned.
"First priority should be that they should come to Pakistan as per schedule," the former Test fast bowler said. "But if there are some problems, cricket should not suffer and we should look for alternatives."