Broad's claims 'a big lie,' says Pakistan


LAHORE, Mar 5 – Pakistan cricket chief Ijaz Butt Thursday accused match official Chris Broad of lying about poor security during Tuesday's terrorist attack on Sri Lanka's cricket squad.SRI_LANKA_ATTACK_796575450.jpg"That a gentleman of his stature is saying this is unfortunate," Butt, chairman of the Pakistan Cricket Board (PCB), told a news conference.

He said the PCB he would lodge a formal protest with International Cricket Council (ICC) against Broad, who was the match referee for the ill-fated second Test between Pakistan and Sri Lanka.

"It is a big lie that there were no policeman. We will lodge a protest with the ICC," said Butt.

Broad was travelling in a van behind the Sri Lanka team bus Tuesday when both vehicles came under fire as they headed towards the Gaddafi stadium for what should have been the second Test’s third day.

The 51-year-old former England batsman escaped unhurt, as did Australian on-field umpires Simon Taufel and Steve Davis, but six policemen and two civilians were killed and Pakistani fourth umpire Ahsan Raza was wounded.

Seven Sri Lankan players and their assistant coach were also wounded.

Broad, addressing a news conference after arriving in Britain Wednesday, slammed Pakistani security forces for leaving the two vehicles like "sitting ducks."

He added: "We were promised high-level security and in our hour of need that security vanished."

Butt disputed Broad’s account, saying: "A commando jumped over Broad and saved his life. The commando was hurt so if there was no policeman, how come Broad was saved?"

Broad also questioned why the Pakistan team did not leave their hotel at the same time as the Sri Lankan team and officials.

"I thought maybe they were having five or 10 minutes more in the hotel and would turn up later, but after this happened you start to think: ‘Did someone know something and they held the Pakistan bus back?’"

Butt rejected any suggestion that there was a conspiracy.

"It is wrong to suggest that. The same security procedure was followed. The Pakistan team used to leave at the same time as the Sri Lankan team and other officials, but somehow or the other on that day they got a bit late," he said.