ICC chief hails improving security situation in Pakistan

KARACHI: On Sunday, International Cricket Council (ICC) chief executive David Richardson said that the people and security forces of Pakistan deserve appreciation for their efforts that have changed the international perception that Pakistan was not a safe country for cricket.

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After watching the PSL final, addressing a press conference at the National Stadium Karachi, the ICC chief said the fact that so many foreign players had agreed to come to Pakistan to play in the PSL was indicative of the improved security situation in the country.

“You should appreciate the work done by Pakistan as a country and the Pakistan security forces because the fact is the perception outside of Pakistan was that it was quite a dangerous place to visit in the past and that perception slowly but surely has been changed through the good work that has been done here, not through any window dressing,” he said.

He said the ICC has been trying to support Pakistan is bringing international cricket back to the country and hosting PSL matches in Pakistan was “a great step in achieving that”. He also thanked the foreign players who made the trip to Pakistan for PSL 2019.

Richardson said the trust built up among foreign teams — from security advisors to the players — regarding playing cricket in Pakistan has increased “tremendously”.

“The level of comfort is growing all the time amongst the foreign players and foreign teams,” he said, responding to a question.

“Step-by-step, certainly Pakistan is on the right path,” he added, assuring ICC’s support to the Pakistan Cricket Board in its efforts to encourage foreign teams to visit Pakistan.

In response to a question regarding the permission given by ICC to the Indian cricket team to wear military caps during a recent match against Australia, Richardson said the global cricket governing body has a “robust regulatory framework by which we grant consent to these types of things”.

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