Chartered aircraft only for Pakistan squad

Calcutta: There has been no announcement, but The Telegraph learns that the Pakistan cricket squad will only be travelling on "chartered aircraft" during their forthcoming tour of India.

Usually, the Board of Control for Cricket in India decides to charter when there are no direct connections from one city to the next, but it's going to be different for the Mohammed Hafeezs and the Misbah-ul Haqs.

Hafeez is the T20 captain, while Misbah has that role in the ODIs.

The Pakistan squad may, however, take a regular flight on one sector ' from New Delhi to Bangalore on December 22, the day of their arrival.

"There's definitely a security consideration and times have changed since Pakistan last toured India for a bilateral series (November-December 2007). It's a conscious decision to avail of only chartered aircraft," a well-placed source said on Thursday.

To make the exercise viable, the Indian cricketers will travel on the same aircraft. The match officials as well.

It's not confirmed, but the Pakistan Cricket Board delegation could be accommodated on the chartered aircraft too.

Even the delegates are going to be accorded "top-level security." Former cricketers will be a part of the visiting delegation.

THE ITINERARY

1st T20: Bangalore (Dec.25), 2nd T20: Ahmedabad (Dec.27); 1st ODI: Chennai (Dec.30). 2nd ODI: Calcutta (Jan.3), 3rd ODI: New Delhi (Jan.6).