Former Sri Lanka captain and Marylebone Cricket Club (MCC) President Kumar Sangakkara on Thursday said that security is a major concern everywhere in the world, adding that the steps that have been taken in Pakistan over the past few years have instilled great confidence in cricketing nations.
Sangakkara will be captaining the club’s 12-man squad in the Feb 13 to 19 tour during which the visitors will play both 20 and 50-over match fixtures against four teams — Lahore Qalandars, Pakistan Shaheens, Northern, and Multan Sultans. All the matches will be held in Lahore.
Addressing a press conference alongside Pakistan Cricket Board (PCB) Chief Executive Wasim Khan in Lahore, the MCC president said it had been 47 years since the club last visited Pakistan and 10 years for him personally.
“The more times that international teams tour, the stronger that message becomes. The MCC is here because one of our core philosophies […] is that the spirit of cricket transcends most barriers that sometimes keep nations and people apart.
Sangakkara also underlined the importance of holding international cricket matches on home ground, adding that that this ultimately contributes towards the “global game”.
“A tour to Pakistan has been under discussion for some time, but it was seeing Khan’s enthusiasm, the arrangements and the improvements that have been made, that was an eye opener.
“For me personally, I have immensely wonderful memories of playing in Pakistan, especially Lahore,” he maintained.—Agencies