Cricket - Pakistan to launch T20 league in March

The Pakistan Cricket Board will launch its own Twenty20 Super League in March with the five franchises involved allowed to sign six overseas players each.

Former International Cricket Council chief executive Haroon Lorgat attended a ceremony alongside PCB chairman Zaka Ashraf on Thursday to unveil the league's logo.

"Haroon Lorgat and the other organisers are working together to make this a grand success for Pakistan cricket," Ashraf said.

"They are hopeful overseas players will take part in the league with the response from players and their agents very positive so far.

"This is a $100 million project we hope will open the door for international cricket to return to Pakistan," said Ashraf.

The PCB, however, did not make it clear whether any overseas players had yet been signed up for the March 26-April 7 competition.

No Test-playing nation has visited Pakistan since 2009 when armed militants attacked Sri Lanka's team bus in Lahore.

Eight Pakistanis were killed and six Sri Lankan players were wounded when gunmen fired on the bus as it was being driven to a stadium in the city.

Last month Bangladesh backed out of a short tour, saying they still had security concerns about playing in Pakistan.

"The PCB is working hard to make this T20 league a success and I hope with the involvement of overseas players it will change the perceptions people have about playing in Pakistan," said Lorgat.

India, Sri Lanka, Bangladesh, Australia, South Africa and England have annual Twenty20 leagues involving foreign players while West Indies plan to follow suit this year.