Chief Executive of Pakistan’s Sindh province Murad Ali Shah on Saturday called on the country’s cricket authorities to hold international matches in Karachi and Hyderabad, a day after Pakistan defeated World XI in the last T20 match in Lahore.
World XI’s visit has been seen as a huge step towards restoration of international cricket in Pakistan which came to a halt following a militant attack on Sri Lankan team in 2009.
“We will contact Pakistan Cricket Board for international cricket matches in Karachi. Law and order situation in Sindh is better than other provinces ” he said while talking to media.
Karachi– Pakistan’s biggest metropolis and its financial capital has traditionally hosted international cricket and sports events until a decade back when terrorist killings, turf battles, sectarian and ethnic strife marred the city of light’s socio-economic life. That is past now with law and order having considerably improved– 80 percent according to some reports.
Shah’s urging comes as the International Cricket Council (ICC) said it has agreed to back Pakistan’s efforts to resume international cricket in their own country and said it would provide financial assistance for security needs.
ICC Chief Executive David Richardson called the recent matches in Punjab capital Lahore an “important stepping stone” for Pakistan to earn the “confidence of the international sporting community”.
“The ICC has already agreed to invest in security and improving the security capabilities for a three-year period,” Richardson said, adding that he would like to see other countries sending their teams to Pakistan.
Speaking at a press briefing on Wednesday ahead of the second T20 match at the Gaddafi Stadium, Richardson said the matches were an example of the “the cricket family … sticking together to help a particular member country.”
Fans have been clamouring for the return of international cricket since March after the final of the domestic T20 Pakistan Super League, featuring high-profile foreign players such as World Cup winner Darren Sammy, was held in Lahore.
Acknowledging the importance of that event, Richardson said that the current three-match series would go a long way towards convincing other countries that Pakistan could safely host their teams.
Pakistan won the Independence Cup 2017 against World XI.