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| 16 October, 2017

Sri Lanka to play in Pakistan eight years after gun attack

Image used for illustrative purpose. The buses transporting the Pakistan and Zimbabwe cricket teams arrive at Gaddafi stadium under armed escort before the start of the final cricket match of their series in Lahore, Pakistan, May 31, 2015. Zimbabwe are the first test-playing nation to tour Pakistan since a 2009 terror attack on the Sri Lanka team bus in Lahore left the driver dead and several players injured.

Image used for illustrative purpose. The buses transporting the Pakistan and Zimbabwe cricket teams arrive at Gaddafi stadium under armed escort before the start of the final cricket match of their series in Lahore, Pakistan, May 31, 2015. Zimbabwe are the first test-playing nation to tour Pakistan since a 2009 terror attack on the Sri Lanka team bus in Lahore left the driver dead and several players injured.

REUTERS/Mohsin Raza

Last month Pakistan hosted three Twenty20 internationals against a World XI in the Gaddafi Stadium in Lahore

COLOMBO - Sri Lanka will play a Twenty20 international in Lahore on Oct. 29, returning to the city for the first time since they suffered a gun and grenade attack in 2009, Sri Lanka Cricket (SLC) confirmed on Monday.

The attack, in which six police officers and two civilians were killed and six Sri Lanka players injured, meant Pakistan became a virtual no-go area for touring teams. Apart from a brief visit by Zimbabwe in 2015, Pakistan has since been playing its home matches in the United Arab Emirates.

But last month Pakistan hosted three Twenty20 internationals against a World XI in the Gaddafi Stadium in Lahore.

The SLC said over the past two months it had conducted a thorough evaluation with the assistance of the governments of Sri Lanka and Pakistan, the Pakistan Cricket Board and independent Security experts.

"Having been fully satisfied with the stringent security measures in place, the SLC ExCo unanimously decided to play the 3rd T20 in Lahore on the 29th October," the SLC said in the statement.

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The first two matches in the Twenty20 series will played in the United Arab Emirates.

(Reporting by Shihar Aneez; editing by Clare Lovell) ((shihar.aneez@thomsonreuters.com; +94-11-232-5540; Reuters Messaging: shihar.aneez.thomsonreuters.com@reuters.net twitter:@shiharaneez))