Lahore: Oct 22, 2012
West Indian batting legend Brian Lara admitted on Sunday that he refused the offer of participating in the two exhibition matches between Pakistan Stars XI and International World XI at Karachi.
"Yes, an offer was made to me...Until such time as the governing body in Pakistan, PCB, is able to convince the rest of the world that the best safety mechanisms have been put in place, and the International Cricket Council (ICC) agrees, I would have to say no," Lara was quoted as saying by the Daily Times.
However, international players such as Sanath Jayasuriya, Ricardo Powell, Andre Nel, Nantie Hayward and others participated in the matches, which was the first in Pakistan involving international stars since the terrorist attack on Sri Lankan team’s bus in 2009 at Lahore. Since then, the Pakistan Cricket Board (PCB) has taken measures to ensure resumption of international matches in the country.
The Pakistan board had issued No Objection Certificates to its players to participate in the matches and had also allowed the use of the venue. However, it stated that the matches were unofficial and unsanctioned by the board.
"The PCB has released its players for the matches. The board has also permitted the use of National Stadium for these matches. But all other obligations including security, anti-corruption, marketing and broadcasting etc are direct responsibility of the organiser and were to be managed by him," a PCB media release had stated.