Mickey Arthur eager for World XI visit to Pakistan after Champions Trophy triumph

News Hour:


Pakistan coach Mickey Arthur said he hoped a proposed World XI visit to the country later this year went ahead after his side served notice of their enduring talent with a stunning Champions Trophy final win over India, reports BSS.

Bottom-ranked Pakistan produced a breathtaking display at London’s Oval on Sunday to inflict a 180-run defeat upon arch rivals India, the title-holders, in the climax of a tournament featuring the world’s top eight one-day international nations.

Pakistan made 338 for four, with Fakhar Zaman’s 114 — the left-handed opener’s maiden ODI hundred — the cornerstone.

Mohammad Amir then reduced India to 33 for three by dismissing all the members of their much vaunted top three, with Rohit Sharma out for a duck and opposing skipper Virat Kohli, the world’s leading ODI batsman, falling for just five.

India eventually collapsed to 158 all out as they suffered their heaviest defeat, by runs, in 129 ODIs against Pakistan.

With the exception of Zimbabwe’s tour two years ago, Pakistan have had to play all of their ‘home’ matches outside of the country since a 2009 terror attack on Sri Lanka’s team bus in Lahore.

However, the International Cricket Council are set to send a World XI to Pakistan in September.

That team could find themselves acting as a ‘path-finder’ for the resumption of tours of Pakistan by major cricket nations.

Giles Clarke, the president of the England and Wales Cricket Board and head of the ICC’s Pakistan task force said, in comments reported by the Guardian in March: “The desire is to give the cricket-starved Pakistani supporters the chance to see some of the world’s finest players in live action.

“Furthermore, the terrorists cannot win and cricket must not give up on Pakistan.”

Arthur for one was looking forward to the series.

“We’re scheduled to have a World XI in Pakistan in September for three Twenty20 games,” he said.

“So hopefully that starts paving the way for future tours. We can only hope.”

Pakistan’s victory on Sunday was all the more astounding given a 124-run defeat by India in their tournament opener at Edgbaston on June 4.

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