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Faf du Plessis at the helm of the announced ICC World XI
World XI tour of Pakistan

Faf du Plessis at the helm of the announced ICC World XI

ICC World XI: Faf du Plessis (c), Hashim Amla, David Miller, Morne Morkel, Samuel Badree, George Bailey, Ben Cutting, Grant Elliot, Tamim Iqbal, Tim Paine, Thisara Perera, Darren Sammy, Imran Tahir, Paul Collingwood

South Africa’s Test and T20 captain Faf du Plessis will captain ICC World XI for a three-match T20I series against Pakistan in Lahore.

Du Plessis, who has 19 wins in 32 T20Is as captain, will have a side boosted by the presence of Hashim Amla, Paul Collingwood, Imran Tahir and Darren Sammy.

The other members of the squad are Samuel Badree, George Bailey, Ben Cutting, Grant Elliot, David Miller, Morne Morkel, Tamim Iqbal, Tim Paine and Thisara Perera.

“I look forward to my maiden tour to Lahore and play my part in the safe and gradual resumption of international cricket in Pakistan,” said the statement of South African skipper read out by the PCB Chairman Najam Sethi.

Sethi also read out the statement of Pakistan captain Sarfaraz Ahmad: “I am confident that following the success of these matches, Pakistan will not only host regular international series but at other international cricket centres as well.”

Former England coach Andy Flower will manage the 14-member squad that has the representation of every major Test nation except India.

The side will have a two-day training camp in Dubai ahead of its tour of Pakistan, which commences from September 10. The PCB will bear the expenditure of the whole tour.

An ICC sponsored security team will visit Lahore in the first week of September, the PCB chairman revealed.

The World XI tour had been in talks since Pakistan organised the PSL-II final in March this year at the Qaddafi Stadium in Lahore with success in which Chris Jordan, Dawid Malan, Marlon Samuels, and Sammy participated for Peshawar Zalmi, who won the title.

The one-week-long tour is the most critical juncture in Pakistan’s cricket history as its success will bring a mini-season of cricket on the country’s soil.

Sri Lankan and the West Indian cricket boards have promised to send their teams to Pakistan in October and November for few T20I games subject to the smooth organisation of the World XI tour.

Since the fateful attack on the Sri Lankan cricket team in March 2009, only Zimbabwe’s tour of Pakistan in 2015 and the PSL-II have been the high-profile cricket in the country.

'Next objective is to organize cricket in Karachi'

After announcing the much-anticipated World XI line-up, Sethi told the reporters about his resolve to host high-profile cricket in Karachi.

Karachi last hosted an international match in February 2009, a Test against Sri Lanka embellished by Younis Khan's 313.

"My objective is now to hold cricket matches in Karachi," Sethi said. "Foreign players and security experts are not ready to go to Karachi at the moment. I have told the PCB's security expert to line up ICC security team's meetings with all the top security officials in Karachi.

"We have to organize a few PSL contests in Karachi first and that will open the doors of return for cricket in the city, like it did for Lahore."