LAHORE – British Universities cricket team’s captain Kamal Alam has said that Pakistan is a good and safe place to play cricket while wrong image of the country is being depicted in the outer world.

Talking to the reporters here on Monday at the Gaddafi Stadium, Kamal said that it would be great experience for them to play against Pakistan Under-19 team. “We are very pleased to be here to play and enjoy cricket and we are aiming to produce good results during the two-match series,” he said.

“One of the main things of the tour is not just cricket, but more to show that Pakistan really needs cricket because cricket is the most important thing in the country. It’s almost like taking the oxygen out of the country when you don’t have international cricket,” he added.

He said the tour would further better relations between the two countries. Vice-captain James Kostoris termed Pakistan Under-19 team a talented one which is among the top teams in the world. “ Pakistan Under-19 is one of the best sides in the world and we expect a tough competition for which we are fully prepared,” he said and added: “The tour will help in enhancing our cricket skills and techniques and it will be a good way of learning.” One of the members of the visiting side Robert Gallimire said they would play the series on a positive note and they had positive thoughts about Pakistan.

PCB director international cricket Intikhab Alam said he hoped the British team’s visit would help improve Pakistan’s image. “We are trying our level best to convince people and the national teams that Pakistan is a safe place and I am sure when these universities team players play here and meet people, they will surely experience some very good and positive things and they will bring back great memories with them and tell their people that the things are not that bad,” Alam added.

Intikhab said Pakistan cricket suffered a lot in recent years as the country was deprived of high quality cricket owing to security issues and now they were optimistic of return of international cricket to Pakistan. “The visit of the British universities side is a good gesture which will help in resumption of international cricket in Pakistan,” he said.

The universities team, which arrived in Pakistan on Monday, will play two 50-over games against a Pakistan Cricket Board (PCB) Under-19 XI here in the city on Wednesday and Friday.