The Pakistan Super League (PSL) 2017 final played in Lahore earlier this year was a landmark moment in the country's cricket history. It was seen as the first step towards bringing back top-quality international cricket that has lacked ever since gunmen attacked a Sri Lankan cricket team in 2009 outside the Gaddafi Stadium in Lahore.

The Twenty20 league final between Peshawar Zalmi and Quetta Gladiators was a one-sided affair, but cricket-starved fans had come in huge numbers to the Gaddafi Stadium to witness the likes of Marlon Samuels, Darren Sammy and Chris Jordan among other foreign stars.

The Pakistan Cricket Board (PCB), by successfully hosting a high-profile encounter, was able to convince the International Cricket Council (ICC) to send a World XI to the terror-hit country.

Much-anticipated encounters

Cut to September, fans in the country are expecting a carnival-like atmosphere when the Faf du Plessis-led ICC World XI will be engaged in a three-match T20 series, which has been awarded international status, between September 12 and 15 in Lahore.

The tickets for the matches are expected to sell like hot cakes as the clashes between the star-studded World XI and the Sarfraz Ahmed's Champions Trophy winners are expected to be closely fought.

The hype around the three-match series is such that the PCB has even set up a countdown timer outside the Gaddafi Stadium when the ticket sale began on Friday, September 1.

pakistan cricket, sarfraz ahmed
Sarfraz Ahmed's Pakistan team will be playing their first ODI since Champions Trophy finalGEOFF CADDICK/AFP/Getty

Star-studded World XI team

The World XI team consists of superstars from seven Test playing nations and will be managed by Zimbabwe great Andy Flower.

Skipper du Plessis will be joined by his South African teammates Hashim Amla, David Miller, Morne Morkel and Imran Tahir. Darren Sammy and Samuel Badree are the West Indies representatives while three Australians -- George Bailey, Tim Paine and Ben Cutting -- are part of the squad.

Hashim Amla and Faf du Plessis
Hashim Amla (R) and Faf du Plessis are two of the biggest names in the World XI sideMUNIR UZ ZAMAN/AFP/Getty Images

On the other hand, Pakistan will be playing their first ODI since beating India in the final of the Champions Trophy in June. Familiar names, including Fakhar Zaman, Mohammad Amir, who played a crucial role in beating Virat Kohli's side are expected to be the crowd favourites in Laohore.

Check out the complete squads here


Squad: Sarfraz Ahmed (c), Fakhar Zaman, Ahmed Shehzad, Babar Azam, Shoaib Malik, Umar Amin, Imad Wasim, Shadab Khan, Mohammad Nawaz, Fahim Ashraf, Hasan Ali, Aamer Yamin, Mohammad Amir, Rumman Raees, Usman Khan, Sohail Khan

World XI

Squad: Faf du Plessis (c), Hashim Amla, Samuel Badree, George Bailey, Paul Collingwood, Ben Cutting, Grant Elliott, Tamim Iqbal, David Miller, Morne Morkel, Tim Paine, Thisara Perera, Imran Tahir, Darren Sammy.