Kumar Sangakkara to Lead 12-Man MCC Squad For Pakistan Tour
File Photo of Kumar Sangakkara (© IANS)

Sri Lanka legend Kumar Sangakkara, the current Marylebone Cricket Club (MCC) president, will lead a 12-man squad for a tour of Pakistan next month.

MCC will play a series of T20 matches against two Pakistan Super League teams – Lahore Qalandars and Multan Sultans and will also face their domestic T20 champions Northern next month.

“We are thrilled to be able to name a strong squad for this tour, which blends youth and experience for a strong side of high quality. We have really appreciated the collaborative approach from the Pakistan Cricket Board and the Pakistan Super League, which has enabled us to arrange fixtures against sides preparing for this year’s PSL tournament as well as to secure the services of some of those participating,” MCC Assistant Secretary (Cricket) John Stephenson said in a media release.

He added, “As a Club, we share the PCB’s wish in wanting to see international teams returning to play in Pakistan on a regular basis and we hope that this tour contributes to those objectives.”

The tour will be a demonstration of MCC’s backing of Pakistan cricketers and fans in the backdrop of the country not hosting major teams in over a decade.

Teams have been unwilling to play in Pakistan since a deadly terror attack on the touring Sri Lankan team in 2009. Pakistan thus have been forced to play majority of their home Test matches in the UAE.

MCC chief executive Guy Lavender will be the team manager of the touring squad while Ajmal Shahzad has been named as their coach.

Squad: Kumar Sangakkara (captain), Ravi Bopara, Michael Burgess, Oliver Hannon-Dalby, Fred Klaassen, Michael Leask, Arron Lilley, Imran Qayyum, Will Rhodes, Safyaan Sharif, Roelof van der Merwe, Ross Whiteley.