- Sinchan Saha | March 24, 2023 | 10:40 am
The debate regarding whether the Indian cricket team will travel to Pakistan for the Asia Cup only grows with each passing day. The ACC president Jay Shah wrote to the International Cricket Council (ICC) to ask for a chance to host the Asia Cup. The PCB objected to the fact that such a proposal had been made, and in retaliation, threatened to pull out of the World Cup later in the year. It was originally intended to be held in Pakistan. Since then, the two boards have disagreed, but the BCCI has stuck to their guns, while Pakistan has insisted that they want to host India.
The most recent development indicates that the two boards may have developed a hybrid model for the Asia Cup. It states that Pakistan will continue to host the Asia Cup, but India’s matches will be played at a neutral location, most likely in Dubai or Abu Dhabi. Despite teams like England and Australia having played full-fledged series in Pakistan, it is believed that India does not trust Pakistan’s security.
However, some former cricketers believe there is a lot more to the situation than meets the eye. One of these former Pakistan stars, Imran Nazir, believes that the entire security situation is just a cover-up to hide India’s fear of facing Pakistan on their soil.
“There is no security reason. Just look how many teams have been to Pakistan. Forget A teams, even Australia visited. These are all just cover ups. The truth is that India won’t come to Pakistan [for the Asia Cup] because they are afraid of losing. Security is just an excuse. Come and play cricket. When you start playing politics, there is no way back,”he said on the Nadir Ali Podcast.
India last played Pakistan in 2006, losing the Test series but winning the one-day internationals
Pakistan has since travelled to India twice before cutting ties after a brief trip in 2012/13. India and Pakistan only play each other in multi-nation ICC tournaments like the World Cup, Champions Trophy, and Asia Cups now that a decade has passed. India and Pakistan clashed three times last year, once at the Asia Cup and once at the T20 World Cup.
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On both occasions, the atmosphere was palpable. While insisting that India cannot stomach losing to Pakistan, Nazir laments that the rivalry has been limited to recent events.
“People want to watch India vs Pakistan games because there is a different level of excitement to it. The entire world knows it. Even we as cricketers feel that for cricket to reach every corner of the world, India-Pakistan matches need to happen. We used to play so much cricket. They are such a balanced tea but India cannot tolerate losing. It’s a game; you’ll win some, you’ll lose some,”he mentioned.