In a landmark moment for Pakistan cricket, the English cricket team has agreed to travel to the country to play T20Is in October 2021. This will be the first time since 2005 that England will play in Pakistan.
International cricket in Pakistan has been a rare sight since 2009 after the Sri Lankan cricket team was attacked outside the Gaddafi Stadium in Lahore, which prompted the International Cricket Council to put a ban on teams travelling to the nation.
The Pakistan cricket team were forced to adopt the UAE as their de-facto home and it continued to be the case till 2015 when Zimbabwe became the first member nation to travel to Pakistan to take part in an international series.
Since then, Afghanistan, West Indies and Sri Lanka have all travelled to Pakistan for short tours, however, the majority of the Test-playing nations continue to avoid travelling to the nation to play international games.
The Pakistan Cricket Board have also hosted the final of the 2018 and 2019 Pakistan Super League in the country after conducting the entire tournament in the UAE.
An incident-free England visit to Pakistan could prompt other nations to travel to the nation and quest the hunger of a nation starved of its most popular sport. While its only two T20Is, it could still prove to be a significant step in international cricket making its return to Pakistan in the future.
Feature image courtesy: AFP / Jon Super