ICC says world cricket to benefit from sport’s development in Pakistan

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Dubai, Sep 11 (IANS) International Cricket Council (ICC) Chairman Shashank Manohar on Monday welcomed the return of international cricket to Pakistan ahead of the Independence Cup taking place in Lahore this week.

The International Cricket Council (ICC) World XI will play three day and night Twenty20 matches with reigning Champions Trophy winners Pakistan at Lahore’s Gaddafi stadium on September 12, 13 and 15.

International teams have refused to tour Pakistan since the 2008 terrorist attack on the Sri Lanka team bus in 2008. Pakistan later hosted Zimbabwe in October 2015.

“This is a good day for world cricket as the PCB hosts a World XI in Lahore for three T20 International games. It has been a long and tough journey as the PCB, Pakistan players and fans have been starved of the opportunity to stage, play and watch international cricket in their own country,” Manohar said.

“I am hopeful that today marks the start of the safe and steady return of international cricket to Pakistan.”

Manohar said the boost to Pakistan’s cricket is a big factor for international cricket.

“The ability of Pakistan to play international cricket at home is crucial to the long term health of the game in Pakistan and one of the main reasons why the ICC established the Pakistan Task Force under the leadership of Giles Clarke, to explore, in partnership with the PCB, how we can get international cricket back to Pakistan safely and on a regular basis,” Manohar said.

“I send both teams and the PCB the very best wishes from the whole cricket family for a competitive series that the passionate fans in Pakistan can enjoy. I sincerely hope that this week’s games mark the start of a steady flow of international cricket to this great cricket nation.”

–IANS

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