West Indies to play three T20s in Lahore this November

FILE - In this March 21, 2015 file photo, West Indies Chris Gayle waves his bat to the crowd as he leaves the field after he was dismissed for 61 runs while batting against New Zealand during their Cricket World Cup quarterfinal match in Wellington, New Zealand. The head of Cricket Australia has joined the criticism of Gayleís suggestive comments to a female reporter during an interview broadcast live on Australian television, saying the former West Indies captainís behavior bordered on harassment and were inappropriate in the workplace. After scoring 41 from 15 deliveries in the Melbourne Renegades win over the Hobart Hurricanes in Australiaís domestic Twenty20 Big Bash League on Monday, Jan. 1, 2016, the former West Indies captain suggested to television reporter Mel McLaughlin that the pair go out for a drink and made remarks about her appearance during a post-innings interview. He added, ìDonít blush, babyî during an awkward pause in the interview. (AP Photo/Ross Setford, File)



West Indies team will visit Pakistan in November this year to play three T20 matches in Lahore after the tour of World XI and Sri Lanka.

The visits of these three foreign teams will mark the return of international cricket to Pakistan. This was stated by Pakistan Cricket Board (PCB) Chairman Najam Sethi at a news conference at Gaddafi Stadium on Monday. Also present at the conference was Media Director Amjad Bhatti and PCB Cricket Operations Director Haroon Rasheed.

“It is a major breakthrough that three foreign teams will be visiting Pakistan in the next three months and with these tours, we will see a lot of international cricket being played in our country after a long gap,” he added.

Najam Sethi also read out a statement of the Cricket West Indies regarding the visit of their team to Pakistan. The statement said, “Cricket West Indies and the PCB are advancing discussion that will see the West Indies playing three T20 matches in Lahore in late November.”

“The tour is subject to the safe conclusion of the ICC World XI team three match series in Lahore, this September and affirmation of manageable security by the ICC sponsored international security company overseeing the security arrangements of the World XI,” the statement added.

“The announcement follows discussions between Cricket West Indies President Dave Cameron and PCB Chairman Najam Sethi,” said the statement adding that both sides expressed a desire to facilitate the return of international cricket to Pakistan.

The PCB chairman said that the World XI, Sri Lankan and West Indian tours were a step forward to bring back international cricket to Pakistan which will start a new era of cricket in Pakistan, a country which was deprived of any such activity for almost one decade.

“All these tours though remain subjected to the condition that things remain peaceful, if the World IX tour takes place successfully, then the Sri Lankan side will visit followed by West Indies,” he said, adding, “It was very difficult to convince the Sri Lankan side to visit Pakistan as it was the victim of a terrorist attack way back in March 2009.”

Najam Sethi expressed the hope that the situation and security will remain conducive during the coming three months to help the tours of foreign teams be successful. International cricket will return with the tour of World XI in mid-September to play three T20 in four days.

“I have the names of the World XI but I cannot reveal them right now but after 72 hours, the PCB will announce the complete side, which will include the top notch of world cricket,” said Najam Sethi. He said that the Sri Lankan side will visit Pakistan at the end of October after finishing its series with Pakistan at the United Arab Emirates, where it will play two test, five one days international and T20 matches.

“Out of the three T20 games, the Sri Lankan side will play one or two matches at Lahore,” he said. He said that the ICC security team will be visiting Pakistan later this month to review security measures in Pakistan for the tour of World XI. To a question, the PCB chairman said that the PCB tried to convince the foreign teams to play matches in cities other than Lahore, but they rejected it on the grounds that since Lahore staged the final of last edition of the PSL amidst good security they will be comfortable to play at Lahore.

“But it does not mean that we have given up the hope of not having matches at other centres, I will be visiting Karachi in coming days to have discussions with the Sindh government to organise a few matches of the next edition of PSL in Karachi,” he asserted. He said that as chairman, he feels contended that he is striving for the cause of cricket in Pakistan.