Grant Elliott: ‘Going to Lahore will feel like home’

The former New Zealand batsman believes the three-match T20 series between Pakistan and the World XI team, which he is a part of, can revive international cricket in the terror-stricken nation.

Grant Elliott, the former New Zealand batsman, will represent the World XI team in the three-match T20 series against Pakistan.   -  AKHILESH KUMAR

Former New Zealand cricketer Grant Elliott seems to have found a new home. The right-handed batsman, who is a part of the World XI squad touring Pakistan for a three-match T20 series, is keen to visit Lahore. He believes it will make him feel at home.

“I have never been to Lahore, so I am really looking forward. I suppose going to Lahore will feel like I am going home,” he told a Pakistan website.

“I am looking forward to playing in front of a country that has sadly been starved of international cricket. They had the PSL final there and the atmosphere was amazing. The likes of Darren Sammy are going back there after the final. It’s exciting to be playing cricket in Pakistan and also making a difference and playing a small part in bringing cricket back to Pakistan,” he added.

Elliot also reasoned as to why he is thrilled to tour Pakistan. He thinks it is safe. “You do your homework and you shouldn’t take it lightly. I don’t think anyone would be going to Pakistan if they did not think it was safe. We are potentially taking a small step to bring international cricket back to Pakistan.”

But he reiterated that he would go through security measures and take professional advice before touring Pakistan in future. “If we get all of that information, we can make our own assessment on the safety issue.”

“Hopefully, the Pakistan Cricket Board can fulfil the same levels of security, as the PSL final, to the World XI team,” he added.

No premier Test team has toured Pakistan since the terrorist attack on the Sri Lankan team bus in 2009, which killed six policemen and injured a few players.

The first two T20 games between World XI and Pakistan will be played on September 12 and 13, followed by the final on September 15 at the Gaddafi Stadium.