Lahore - The Pakistan Cricket Board (PCB) has said that it will not issue the no objection certificate (NOC) to players and officials for featuring in the Afghanistan T20 League, which will be held in July.

The PCB spokesman said: “None of the players and officials (coaches) contracted to Afghanistan T20 league will not be issued NOCs. No Pakistani player or official can feature in the league.”

Afghanistan's domestic T20 league, the Shpageeza Cricket League, was set to host a number of Pakistani players in its inaugural edition, which included Babar Azam, Umar Akmal, Kamran Akmal, Sohail Tanveer, Rumman Raees and others. The PCB's decision to not issue NOCs has thrown their chances of inclusion in the lucrative league in jeopardy.

The decision comes after Afghanistan cancelled proposed home and away cricket fixtures with Pakistan after 90 people were killed in a deadly bomb attack which hit the country’s capital on Wednesday. "The ACB hereby cancel all kinds of cricket matches and initial mutual relationship agreement with the Pakistan Cricket Board," the Afghan board had said on its Facebook page.

Pakistan were set to play their first Twenty20 match in Kabul later this year in what was seen as an opportunity for the neighbours to ease tensions over border skirmishes and alleged proxy warfare. The Kabul match, set for July or August, would have been followed by a fixture in Pakistan and a full series at an unspecified date. On Thursday, PCB had issued a statement rejecting the “baseless allegations leveled by Afghanistan Cricket Board (ACB) in the wake of the tragic Kabul blast.”

“While our sympathies are with the victims and families affected by the tragedy, we reject the irresponsible statement made by the ACB and hereby announce the cancellation of the proposed series between the two countries,” the statement read.

On May 27, the relations between the two neighbouring countries seemed to improve after Chairman PCB Shahryar Khan had announced two T20 matches and a bilateral cricket series in a joint press conference with Chairman Afghan Cricket Board (ACB) Atif Mashal.

"Pakistan and Afghanistan will play two T20 matches and a bilateral cricket series," Khan had said, stating that the PCB is on good terms with the ACB. However, the new move seeks to heighten tensions between Pakistan and Afghanistan.

Sethi terms Afghan security very bad: Offering a brief explanation as to why the decision was taken to bar players from featuring in the Shpageeza T20 League, PCB Executive Committee chairman Najam Sethi Friday tweeted his thoughts on the development. "PCB will not issue NOCs to players/coaches/umpires for Afghanistan. Security situation there is very bad," he said.