Pakistan Cricket Board (PCB) chief Rameez Raja has warned that a major showdown is on the way BCCI The Pakistan cricket team will not travel to India if the Men in Blue are ousted from the Asia Cup. Pakistan is to host the 2023 Asia Cup. Jay Shah, secretary of the Board of Control for Cricket in India, has already confirmed that Team India will not tour Pakistan.
Rameez Raja has put his foot down and said that India can play the World Cup without Pakistan if they do not participate in the tournament which Sri Lanka won in September. “If Pakistan does not take part in the World Cup to be held in India next year, who will watch it? Our stand is clear: If the Indian team comes here, we will go for the World Cup. If they don’t come, they can play the World Cup without us,” Raja told Urdu News.
“We will adopt an aggressive approach. Our team is showing performance. I have always said that we need to improve the economy of Pakistan cricket, and that can only happen if we perform well. In the 2021 T20 World Cup, we beat India. We beat India in the T20 Asia Cup. In one year, the Pakistan cricket team defeated a team with a billion dollar economy twice.”
Shah, who is also the head of the Asian Cricket Council (ACC), said last month that India would not travel to Pakistan for the Asia Cup, and the tournament would be shifted to a neutral venue.
The next 50-over World Cup is to be played in India. The flagship tournaments are set to be held in Pakistan as the country is to host the upcoming edition of the Asia Cup in 2023, which will be followed by the 2025 ICC Champions Trophy.
BCCI President Roger Binny had earlier this month said that the decision of Team India going to Pakistan for the Asia Cup 2023 is not in the hands of the BCCI and the government takes the decision.
As for the Asia Cup, the last 2 editions of the tournament were played in UAE and it looks like it will be moved out of Pakistan. In 2018, BCCI had the hosting rights but could not host it. In 2022, Sri Lanka had the hosting rights but the tournament was once again played in the United Arab Emirates.
The Men in Green last played in India during the 2016 T20 World Cup. Due to sour political relations, bilateral cricket remains suspended between India and Pakistan, who only play each other in multi-team tournaments.