Lahore: Desperate to get international cricket back to Pakistan, former captain Shahid Afridi is thinking of organising a double-wicket competition, involving players from different countries, in the country.
"When I was in Australia playing in the Big Bash tournament, I spoke to number of top players from different countries to get their feedback on whether they would be interested in traveling to Pakistan for a double-wicket competition," Afridi said.
The flamboyant all-rounder said he had tried to convince the players why it was so important for international cricket to be played in Pakistan, and the response he got from many players was positive.
"That is why now I am seriously planning to organise a double-wicket competition with foreign players in a befitting manner, but dates and venues will be decided later," he said.
"New Zealand's former captain Daniel Vettori, West Indian Chris Gayle and some Australian players were among those with whom I discussed this proposal and they expressed great interest in it and in playing in Pakistan," Afridi added.
No Test-playing nation has visited Pakistan since March 2009 when militants attacked the Sri Lankan team in Lahore, killing six Pakistani policemen and a van driver and wounding some of the visiting players.
The Pakistan board recently officially invited the Bangladesh Cricket Board to send its team to Pakistan for a scheduled FTP (Future Tours Programme) series in April and is waiting for a visit by the Bangladesh security delegation to move things ahead.
Afridi said the impression he had got in his personal interactions with players from other countries was that they all wanted to help out Pakistan cricket and wanted to see international cricket back in Pakistan.
"I am hopeful something good will come out of it because it is very important we get back international cricket in the country. I am delighted that the PCB (Pakistan Cricket Board) has taken the initiative of inviting Bangladesh to send its team to Pakistan," Afridi said.
A PCB official, when contacted, said Afridi had not spoken to them as yet about the double-wicket competition but if he was planning such an event, the board would support him.
"We ourselves have written letters to the ICC and all Test-playing nations, including India, to help us revive international cricket in Pakistan and this is part of our new initiative to take steps to bring some teams to the country," the official said.