'Courageous' XI will tour Pakistan

ECB chairman says a team of world players will go to Pakistan to show solidarity.

    Pakistan have not played home matches in more than 17 months [GALLO/GETTY]

    A World XI fuelled by "determination and courage" will visit Pakistan in a gesture of support for the country's Test cricket side according to a top international official.

    Pakistan are unable to stage matches at home due to the security situation that arose when Sri Lanka's team bus was caught in a deadly attack in March last year.

    But England and Wales Cricket Board (ECB) chairman Giles Clark wrote in the Wisden Cricketer magazine said that a team could be put together even if it was impossible for normal countries to tour.

    "But with determination and courage an ICC World XI in due course will go and play against Pakistan in her great cities and there will be a marvellous atmosphere," Clarke said.

    "It will be an historic moment when international cricket resumes in Pakistan and the first ICC (International Cricket Council) team walks out."

    Bus attack

    Pakistan have not hosted an international match since gunmen attacked the Sri Lanka team bus in Lahore.

    "With determination and courage an ICC World XI in due course will go and play against Pakistan in her great cities"

    Giles Clark, ECB chairman

    Seven people were killed and six team members and a coach were injured.

    Clarke also said England would continue to stage neutral Tests featuring Pakistan next year and in 2012.

    Pakistan played a two-match series there against Australia this season.

    He said the Pakistan Cricket Board's (PCB) income had fallen from $42 million to $15.5 million because of its international isolation.

    "The ECB intends to assist in staging more Pakistan games here in 2011 and 2012," Clarke said.

    "The atmosphere, the passionate support and, of course, the tremendous cricket played by the Pakistan team made it a compelling experience. The PCB's economic needs make it imperative."

    SOURCE: Agencies


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