The ACC (Asian Cricket Council) in Singapore during its meeting this week reasserted its move to give the hosting rights for the 2020 Asia Cup to Pakistan. This created serious doubts on the involvement of India, the defending champions. The series, which might be organized in T20 way, will be conducted in September before the World T20 2020 in Australia.
It was also agreed in the meeting that the series will be moved to a different place if diplomatic connections between Pakistan and India do not get back to normal. Bangladesh has been defeated by India in the final of the earlier edition conducted in the UAE (United Arab of Emirates).
The ACC made the decision that Pakistan will carry on to be the hosts until the situation requires otherwise. The place can be modified as it was done a few years back when the event was moved to the UAE from India.
India earlier played in 2008 in Pakistan soil. The terror attack in Mumbai later that year was the sign of India’s final visit to the nation. When media made contact, a senior official of BCCI claimed that: “The decision to conduct the tournament in Pakistan will be entirely the government’s move. The Board will follow whatever move the center makes. We think that just like we hosted the series in the UAE in 2018, Pakistan must also preferably organize it at a neutral place.”
During the ACC meeting, the PCB officials also claimed that Sri Lanka sends its team to Pakistan to play the two matches for ICC Test Championship in Karachi and Lahore in September 2019.
“Pakistan informed the delegates during the ACC meeting conducted in Singapore that they might host the Asia Cup but a final decision on the location might be taken after discussion with other ACC members and considering the prevailing political and security situation in Pakistan around that time,” a media report claimed to the media in an interview. This was also backed by a PCB source.
Fascinatingly, the CoA (Committee of Administrators) spearheaded by Vinod Rai had issued to the ICC (International Cricket Council) to sever connections with nations from where terror originates, putting a doubt over the much-expected match between Pakistan and India in the current 2019 World Cup.
The request was made at the back of the Pulwama attack that took place in February. On the other hand, the ICC refused the request. Mockingly, the decision this week was made during the meeting which was attended by Rahul Johri, the BCCI CEO.
Besides from a decision on the Asia Cup, the ACC also confirmed its stand to add cricket in the 2022 Asian Games planned to take place in China in Hangzhou.
In this regard, a decision was made when the OCA (Olympic Council of Asia) added cricket in the sports program. The move was taken during the General Assembly of OCA in March last year in Bangkok. The sport is anticipated to take place in the T20 format in the quadrennial tournament.