Pakistan has to work to draw big teams back: ICC chief

Pakistani fans came decked up in all shades and colours Pakistan v World XI 1st T20I Independence Cup 2017 Lahore

Pakistani fans came decked up in all shades and colours Pakistan v World XI 1st T20I Independence Cup 2017 Lahore

The ICC chief executive said security teams are satisfied with the arrangements in Lahore, adding that the security situation in Pakistan has improved.

Sethi further added that in an attempt to gain confidence of global teams on the security of Pakistan, the PCB has employed a FICA and ICC backed security company.

Sethi claimed that the country has successfully tackled the menace of terrorism, which he felt will help in bringing in more global teams to play in Pakistan.

Pakistan Cricket Board (PCB) chairman Najam Sethi on Tuesday said that he will welcome cricketer-turned-politician Imran Khan if he attends a Pakistan versus World XI match, ARY News reported.

To a question he said ICC ensures that all the member countries must ensure their participation in an ICC event but as far as bilateral series between Pakistan and India are concerned ICC cannot intervene in it."Bilateral cricket is not being played between the two countries (Pak and India) due to political reasons and it will resume at a stage when relations between them will be normal", he added. It's a long and gradual process and soon it will start improving and help Pakistan convince other cricket playing nations to come and play here. "Let's get through this tour, then have other teams touring Pakistan", said the head of cricket's governing body.

Speaking at the press briefing here at the Gaddafi Stadium on Wednesday, Richardson said: "We strongly believe that hosting the World XI would be a step forward towards building confidence of sporting community". Meanwhile, Chairman, Pakistan Cricket Board, Najam Sethi said that World XI will again visit Pakistan in year 2018 and 2019 to help promote global cricket in the country. He added that the current circumstances between India and Pakistan are more driven by the political circumstances.

To a query regarding no India player in the World XI, he said: "The fact is that you can't ignore political situation between the two countries while another reason is that India has very busy FTP. They also need extra security so I think the Andy Flower and the PCB has preferred practical approach in this regard".

Richardson said he hoped Pakistan - who also hosted Zimbabwe in 2015 - would be able to build on the current tour."It's a long process", said Richardson of the revival of global cricket in Pakistan.

Richardson also appreciated both the teams particularly the World XI for coming and playing a series in Pakistan.

ICC official said ICC is dealing with the matter of Indian refusal to play its bilateral series with Pakistan and its (ICC) committee is close to resolve this issue. With the continued blessings of Almighty Allah, there will be more cricket when Sri Lankan team arrives to play one T20 match in Lahore towards end of October to be followed by a visit of West Indies team in November 2017.

Lahore has hosted all the global matches played in Pakistan in the last two years.Even before the 2009 incident, foreign teams already had concerns about touring Pakistan following the September 11, 2001 attacks on the United States which sparked the invasion of neighbouring Afghanistan and the "war on terror".

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