“I have no security fears here and am proud to be part of Quetta Gladiators,” van Wyk said in a video message. “I am excited to be back in Pakistan.
“The last time I was here was in 2003, when the Proteas came here and after the second ODI, Herschelle Gibbs was injured so I was called all the way from South Africa,” recalled van Wyk of the 2003 One-Day International series which South Africa won 3-2.
Van Wyk is here as a replacement player for Quetta for the final against Peshawar Zalmi.
Dashing wicketkeeper-batsman van Wyk, now 37, played 17 ODIs, besides featuring in eight Twenty20 Internationals in which he scored one century and a half-century.
He did not feature in the series in Pakistan but has fondest memories of the country.
“The most interesting thing from that tour was that I flew to Karachi at 6 in the morning and then went through Pakistan in a car with three people to reach Peshawar as there were no flight,” recalled van Wyk.
“That gave me a chance to see the country in a special way. It took me 12 hours to reach Peshawar. That is the fondest of memories. So I have got another chance to play in Pakistan and at the end of the day, I think cricket will be the winner once again.”
Rayad Emrit, the West Indian allrounder, expressed similar sentiments.
“I am excited to be here, the team is buzzing and I have no issues with security since I have arrived,” said Emrit, who played two ODIs for West Indies and is a regular feature in the Bangladesh Premier League and the Caribbean Premiere League.