Global cricketers voice support for World XI match
12 September, 2017, 00:48 | Author: Greg Wolfe
The World XI squad reached Lahore in the wee hours of Monday from Dubai and were received at the Allama Iqbal International Airport by Pakistan Cricket Board Chairman, Najam Sethi and other high ranking officials.
The players from England, Australia, West Indies, South Africa, Bangladesh, Sri Lanka, and New Zealand agreed to come to the country for the matches in an effort to give a boost to cricket in Pakistan.
"I spoke with him after Giles Clarke had first approached this idea with me", Andy Flower said, referencing Clarke, the head of the International Cricket Council's Pakistan Task Force. But security has dramatically improved across Pakistan in the last two years, signalling hopes for the slow revival of worldwide sport in the country. Amir and his wife are now in England expecting their first child, with the due date potentially any time over the next week - Pakistan play their three T20Is against a World XI on Tuesday, Wednesday and Friday.
Du Plessis repeatedly alluded to the end of his playing days - he even said he was unlikely to be on a tour to Pakistan with South Africa because he would have retired by then - and spoke of the importance of this tour for the legacy he'd like to leave behind. The first time he represented Pakistan was at the World T20 in 2009, just months after the attacks on the Sri Lanka team bus in Lahore.
To a question he said during the past years Pakistan cricket team achieved many mile stones despite suspension of global cricket and visit of the world XI comes as a way celebrate Pakistan cricket teams progress and success in the game.
Sarfraz grew up in an era when Pakistan used to host worldwide teams frequently.
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"It's fair to say that this will be the first time when we actually come into play cricket for something which is much bigger than the game itself", Du Plessis said.
Cricketers from seven countries landed in Pakistan late on Sunday night.
He stood as umpire in as many as 41 T20 global games overseas but not in one match on the Pakistani soil. "It's very hard to explain, the players whom I grew up with and now coming back in a way which I really don't know".
The three matches will be held on September 12, 13 and 15th at Gaddafi StadiumLahore.
The resumption of major global cricket matches in Pakistan, following a period when they were suspended due to security concerns, has been welcomed by the chairman of the worldwide Cricket Council (ICC) Shashank Manohar. It will be good for world cricket. Sarfraz said that the World XI tour is a moment of great joy and pride for all of us.
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