ICC chairman welcomes World XI's tour of Pakistan


South African captain of the World XI, Faf du Plessis said he was honoured to be the captain of the World XI whose visit will help in breaking the dead lock of global cricket in Pakistan.

He expressed his gratitude to the World-XI and the respective cricket boards of the team players for allowing them to visit Pakistan.

Global teams have refused to tour Pakistan since the 2008 terrorist attack on the Sri Lanka team bus in 2008.

"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.

He said Pakistan was rich in cricket talent which was evident from Pak team's achievements in the field of cricket and the people of Pakistan want to see worldwide cricket being played in their own backyard. World XI team reached Lahore Airport to play much-awaited and anticipated three T-20 matches in Lahore.

"This is a good day for world cricket as the PCB hosts a World XI in Lahore for three T20 worldwide games".

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The years-long pause began in 2009, when gunmen attacked the Sri Lankan national cricket team bus in Lahore, wounding several of the players and killing six policemen and a driver. "The wounds heal slowly, but they most definitely will, and these matches in Lahore will send out a message to cricketing nations around the world that we (Pakistan) too will be back to hosting countries and celebrating the much-loved game".

"We are under load of responsibility as we are the winners of the Champions Trophy and we have to show consistency to maintain the flow of our recent success", said the wicketkeeper batsman. "We just wanted to get here and experience what was going to be something that was going to be huge turnaround in world cricket". Despite their global isolation, Pakistan had welcomed Zimbabwe for a visit in 2015 but the matches had been supervised by local Pakistan officials.

Pakistan has not hosted top-level global cricket - barring five limited-over matches against minnows Zimbabwe in 2015 - since that attack, which killed eight people and injured seven players and staff.

"Look all of the players asked me and being a local I told them very positive things because I have been coming here to meet my family and I have come to see them every year, " Tahir said on the eve of a three-match series between Pakistan and World XI in Lahore.

All three matches will be played at the Gaddafi stadium. "As a player all you want is that peace of mind and they gave it to us, so they are very confident that this will be smooth sailing".