Mohammad Ali Shah addressing a press conference. -Photo by AFP

KARACHI: The Pakistan Cricket Board (PCB) announced on Tuesday that it is releasing its players to participate in the matches against the World XI being played in Karachi from October 20-21 and also permitted the use of the National Stadium for the matches as the organisers promised foolproof security.

Pakistan will host a World XI for two Twenty20 matches in hopes of moving a step closer to resuming home internationals which have been suspended for more than three years.

Foreign sides have refused to play in Pakistan since 2009, when the Sri Lankan team was attacked as they arrived for the third day of the second Test in Lahore, leaving eight people dead.

However, the PCB absolved itself of any other responsibility, saying that issues such as security, boradcasting and marketing were all in the hands of the organisers.

“The ECC acknowledged this good initiative taken by Dr. Shah and hoped that the matches will be a great success," PCB said in a press release.

Mohammad Ali Shah, sports minister for Sindh province, said the matches will help restore Pakistan's image in the world.

“We hope that this small step will pave the way for other teams to tour Pakistan and by staging these matches we hope to send a clear message that our country is safe for international sports,” Shah told a press conference.

Former Sri Lankan captain Sanath Jayasuriya will lead the World XI, which also includes former players from South Africa and the West Indies. They will play a Pakistan All Stars side in Karachi on Saturday and Sunday.

Former West Indian batsman Alvin Kallicharan will be the manager of the World XI, said Shah.

The World XI will also include Ricardo Powell, Steven Taylor, Jermaine Charles Lawson and Adam Sanford, all from the West Indies; South Africa's Justin Kemp, Loots Bosman, Mthandeki Tschabalala, Andre Nel, Andre Johann Seymore and Nantie Hayward; and Shapoor Zadran and Mohammad Shahzad Mohammadi of Afghanistan. Shah said strict security would be in place.

“Around 5,000 policemen will be employed to avoid any lapse and we are sure that these arrangements will make the players at ease,” said Shah.

“All the players are excited over the prospect of visiting Pakistan.”

Pakistan All Stars will be led by current all-rounder Shahid Afridi and include Younis Khan, Nasir Jamshed, Asad Shafiq, Umar Akmal, Shoaib Malik, Umar Gul, Mohammad Sami, Wahab Riaz and Imran Nazir.

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Comments are closed.

Comments (17)

Sajid Hussain (India)
October 16, 2012 7:17 pm
Brave but a very poor decision.....
October 16, 2012 7:11 pm
May Allah help and take care of all the participiants.
Talat Ali Hamdany
October 17, 2012 7:19 am
Farooq you have hit the nail on the head. We can't bring peace to Karachi streets much less in a stadium full of thousands. Don't embarrass the nation any more than what it's going through. As Omar has mentioned the man at the helm of affairs is no other than an exhibitionist.
October 17, 2012 3:30 am
Is it the same Dr, Shah who shoved and pushed the gold medalist athlete for leading the parade as a flagbearer in Asian games? If it is him, shame on him,,,
October 17, 2012 4:47 am
Indeed. I also recognized him immediately.
October 17, 2012 6:25 am
No need to take such a big risk.If about 5000 policemen(as per Dr.Shah ) look after security of the teams/events...then the trouble makers (target killers/robbers ) will have open/unchecked field in Karachi.Crime rate may rise in the city during the matches.Already the law enforcement personnel are too few in the city and inefficient. Pl. save our country from any further embarrasments.First improve the overall law and order situation, and only after this is done, then invite foreign players. Farooq
October 17, 2012 3:11 am
I dont think it is the right idea to make afridi captain. Make Wasim Akram captain. Players will not perform under afridi . Hafeez for sure and any other captains. The best way is to make an ex captain T20 captain and let the boys perform with bat and bowl instead of captaincy
afzal khan
October 17, 2012 3:19 am
Dr:Shah I love your tie it,s beautiful and good luck in the game . I hope something positive comes out of this game.
October 16, 2012 11:52 pm
This is the same man who wrestled away Pakistani Flag from an athlete in common wealth games so that he can march in the front.
October 17, 2012 10:55 am
very good start, i hope all other International teams will also visit to pakistan, but there must be foolproof security for teams.
October 17, 2012 1:07 am
A good initiative, indeed.
October 17, 2012 1:35 am
I pray that everything goes peacefully and smoothly. Ameen. We want int'l cricket to return to Pakistan soon....
Saeed Bokhari
October 16, 2012 2:55 pm
It will be a mistake to hold the game in Pakistan because of the failure and incompetence of local authorities and officials.
Muhammad Daud Alam
October 17, 2012 9:22 am
:) Good observation mite !!
October 17, 2012 6:06 am
This is the same man who brought huge shame and disrepute to Pakistan in the Commonwealth Games - he is a complete nincompoop if you ask me. Why is he still a Sports Minister and why is he Taimur Malik from Australia's beloved!!??!!
Taimur Malik - Australia
October 16, 2012 2:10 pm
Very Good Effort by our beloved Dr. Shah..........
October 16, 2012 4:57 pm
wohooo exciting times for pak cricket !!! finally, after a long struggle, we'll get to see matches taking place in pak !!!...this certainly will pave way for other teams to visit pakistan...
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