British Council hosts MCC in a prestigious ceremony - Daily Times
Captained by current MCC President Kumar Sangakkara, the Club was hosted by British High Commission in British Council on Saturday.
The concept of a tour to Pakistan has been a long-stated aim of the MCC World Cricket committee, with its Members having expressed an interest in helping Pakistan during the country's exile from hosting international cricket.
Following an attack on the touring Sri Lanka team's bus in Lahore in 2009, Pakistan's home Test matches have been played on neutral territory, until very recently, as a Two-Test series between the sides - part of the World Test Championship - began in December.
The prestigious ceremony was attended by Governor Punjab Chaudhry Muhammad Sarwar, Chairman PCB Ehsan Mani, Overseas Commissioner Waseem Akhtar, Senator
Singakara while exclusively talking to Daily Times expressed confidence that international cricket will return fulltime to Pakistan very soon.
Making it clear that security is a major concern everywhere in the world, Sangakkara lauded the steps that have been taken in Pakistan over the past few years to encourage teams and players to play in the country.
"We should not lose sight of the importance. Pakistan's strength, in the big picture, as far as global cricket is concerned and keeping it strong and healthy and the MCC tour is a part of this puzzle," Sangakkara said.
The former left handed batsman, who had toured Pakistan in 2009 when militants attacked the Sri Lankan team bus in Lahore, said that he was confident more international cricket will be played in Pakistan.
He noted that cricket was a global sport and belonged to everyone and it was important for teams and players to play at home and in front of home crowds.
Notably, last December, Test cricket returned to Pakistan after more than a decade when they hosted Sri Lanka for two matches.
Ehsan Mani in an exclusive statement said, "It is a new beginning of international cricket in Pakistan. The environment is ideal for the international cricket as the stadium packed with cricket crazy fans shows passion for the game."
Adding to this, Senator Faisal Javed, himself a keen cricket lover, recalled that he had witnessed the international cricket matches held in Pakistan in the past. The country, however, had been deprived of international cricket for the last many years, he added.
The visit of MCC and the jam-packed stadium, he said, explicitly expressed the love of Pakistanis for the game of cricket.
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