BCCI has been dealt with a major blow over the hosting of Asia Cup 2020 later this year. The Asian Cricket Council (ACC) has left the final decision of hosting on the Pakistan Cricket Board. FYI, Pakistan Cricket Board has the rights to host the Asia Cup this year and PCB is adamant to host it on their turf only.
With the all-time low bilateral ties between India and Pakistan, if this happens, the defending champions are very unlikely to visit Pakistan to play the tournament.
A BCCI official in a talk with IANS said, “The question isn’t about the PCB hosting the tournament. It is about the venue and as things stand now, it is quite clear that we would need a neutral venue. There is no way that an Indian team can visit Pakistan to even participate in a multi-nation event like the Asia Cup,”
The official also added that India won’t force Asian Cricket Council to change his decision but if the council opts for a neutral venue like BCCI did in 2018 than BCCI will be more than happy to send a team. FYI, after PCB failed to get VISA for the India tour in 2018, BCCI hosted the tournament in UAE.
“If the Asian Cricket Council (ACC) is ok with an Asia Cup minus India then it is a different ball game. But if India is to participate in the Asia Cup, then the venue cannot be Pakistan. A neutral venue is always an option. BCCI did it in 2018,” pointed out the official pointed.
India and Pakistan have not played a bilateral series since December 2012 when Pakistan had visited India for three ODIs and two T20Is. Since then both teams have faced other either in Asia Cup or in ICC tournaments.
An ACC source also quoted that the final decision will be taken only after a meeting in the next month but it is most likely that PCB’s decision will be the final word on the matter. “ACC will have a meeting sometime in February to discuss issues related to the hosting of the Asia Cup this year. This year Pakistan is the host so it is Pakistan’s call if they want to host the tournament or not,” an ACC source told the news outlet.
Pakistan Cricket Board wants to take international cricket back to their home turf after almost a decade of exile. Since, the terrorist attack on the Sri Lankan team bus a decade ago the international teams have feared to tour and play cricket in Pakistan. In the last decade only Sri Lanka, Bangladesh and West Indies have visited Pakistan that too only once.