Sri Lanka may visit Pakistan later this year

PCB chief says govt yet to give nod for World XI tour to Pakistan

LAHORE - Pakistan Cricket Board chairman Shaharyar Khan Thursday said the Sri Lankan cricket team is expected to tour Pakistan at the end of this year.

“Sri Lanka may visit Pakistan to play few matches in Pakistan later this year. Sri Lankan cricket officials highly appreciated the security arrangements that had been made for the PSL final during the recent ICC meeting as well as improved security situation in the country and have expressed willingness in sending their team to play in Pakistan,” said Shaharyar.

He said the Sri Lanka team’s tour would pave way for the return of international cricket to Pakistan and would help in easing out the difficulties the PCB is facing and would change the perception of other teams about Pakistan.

"The world had witnessed the type of security that was provided in the high-profile Pakistan Super League (PSL) final at Lahore. PSL final had proved a great breakthrough in reviving international cricket in Pakistan," he added.

The PCB chief also revealed that both Bangladesh and Sri Lanka are agreed to send their junior teams to Pakistan as well. Shaharyar said many countries also unofficially praised the improved security situation in Pakistan during the sidelines of the recently-held ICC meeting held and some of these countries’ representatives had already witnessed the security arrangements that had been made for the PSL final in Lahore.

He said the host country will be providing high-profile security to the Sri Lankan team along the lines of the security provided to foreign players for the PSL final earlier this year.

The PCB chairman said a World XI team would also be touring Pakistan in September, which would include foreign players from Australia, West Indies, Sri Lanka and South Africa.

He said the tour of World XI is very crucial for the revival of international cricket in Pakistan but revealed that the visit is conditioned to the approval of the government of Pakistan and they wer still waiting for the government’s nod for holding the series.

However, he said ninety percent arrangements for the said visit hae been finalized and hoped they would soon heard from the government also in this regard.

The PCB chief also praised Giles Clarke for all his efforts and hard work to make the World XI tour possible. He said Andy Flower would come to Pakistan being the coach of the World XI team that may also include Bangladesh’s Tamim Iqbal as well as top players from Australia, West Indies, Sri Lanka and South Africa.

The PCB chief said the credit of ICC Champions Trophy goes to all the players and coaching staff as after defeat in the first match the team bounced back in style despite a lot of criticism from all the quarters.

He said many quarters have criticized the appointment and working of head coach Micky Arthur but now the result speaks itself.

The PCB chief said the board has inducted top professionals in its set up to raise the level of the game in the country. He also praised chief selector Inzamam ul Haq and his team saying that they were all very hard working and honest people who were conducting their job efficiently. He also hoped tht Champions Trophy victory would go a long way for the promotion of the game and the way the senior team had defeated the top teams it would boost the confidence of the youngsters as well and would help improving the standards of the first class cricket.



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