‘No such issue raised’: Pakistan board rejects talks of ‘government permission’ during Asian Cup meeting

Controversy over the right to host the 2023 Asian Cup continues when no agreement has been reached on the venue for the continental tournament. Although Pakistan retained the right to host the tournament, the Control Board of Cricket in India (BCCI) was unwilling to send its team to the country. As negotiations continued, the decision was adjourned to March. However, one report also suggested that all participating nations (at the Asian Cup) were required to obtain government permission to travel to Pakistan for the tournament. However, PCBs appeared on all cylinders, indicating that no such talk was held during the meeting.

Making a strong statement on the ‘report’, the PCB suggested that none of the members intended to seek government permission for them to participate in the Asian Cup in Pakistan.

In its statement, the Pakistan Cricket Council wrote: “Cricinfo, in its story under the title Decision on Asian Cup Venue postponed to March 2023, stated: ‘In addition, all ACC members are said to have been asked to search. their government’s position on whether their teams can go to Pakistan.”

The PCB wishes to clarify that no such issue was raised during the meeting, nor did any member indicate an intention to seek government permission to compete in Pakistan. Sri Lanka recently visited Pakistan in 2017 and 2019, while Bangladesh visited Pakistan in 2020.

In the Future Travel Program (FTP) 2023-2027, agreed and announced by all ICC Members, Afghanistan, Bangladesh and Sri Lanka have confirmed their visits to Pakistan.”

As PTI reports, the ACC is expected to move the Asian Cup from Pakistan and decide on an alternative venue in March. Regarding the proposal, however, the head of the PCB, Najam Sethi, told Jay Shah that his country “will not give up the right to host the Asian Cup or the Champions Trophy in 2025”. In addition, he also added: “If BCCI cannot get permission from the government to attend the Asian Cup, Pakistan will not come to India for the (ODI) World Cup.”

The deadlock on the issue is expected to be broken in March, with the tournament scheduled to be held in September this year.

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