KARACHI (AFP) – Peshawar, the main city in Pakistan s northwest, won their second consecutive Twenty20 title this week with players and coaches hailing falling levels of violence for helping the sport prosper in the terror-hit region.
The city of four million has been at the forefront of a rebellion that rose up more than a decade ago which seeks to topple the government.
For years, Taliban suicide bombers were able to strike almost at will as people feared leaving their homes even to go out shopping.
But the situation has improved markedly since the government began major military offensives in the North Waziristan tribal district last year aimed at clearing Taliban and Al-Qaeda bases.
On Monday night, Peshawar defended their national Twenty20 title in Rawalpindi, beating by seven wickets a star-studded Karachi side featuring national T20 captain Shahid Afridi and his deputy Sarfraz Ahmed.