Jay Shah

Jay Shah’s Asia Cup comment can impact World Cup visit, says Pak

Following BCCI secretary Jay Shah’s statement that the Asia Cup 2023, to be hosted by Pakistan, will be shifted to a neutral venue, the Pakistan Cricket Board (PCB) on Wednesday responded officially to the Asian Cricket Council (ACC).

“The PCB has noted with surprise and disappointment yesterday’s comments made by the ACC president, Mr Jay Shah with regards to shifting next year’s Asia Cup to a neutral venue. The comments were made without any discussion or consultation with the Board of the Asian Cricket Council or the Pakistan Cricket Board (event host) and without any thoughts towards their long-term consequences and implications,” the PCB said.

Also read: India will play Asia Cup at neutral venue: BCCI secretary Jay Shah

“After having presided over the ACC meeting during which Pakistan was awarded the ACC Asia Cup with overwhelming support and response from the ACC Board Members, Mr Shah’s statement of shifting of the ACC Asia Cup has clearly been made unilaterally,” PCB statement said.

The PCB further said that such statements can “impact Pakistan’s visit to India for the ICC Cricket World Cup 2023 and future ICC events in India in the 2024-2031 cycle.”

“This is contrary to the philosophy and spirit for which the Asian Cricket Council was formed in September 1983 – a united Asian cricket body to safeguard the interests of its members and organise, develop, and promote the game of cricket in Asia,” PCB said in a letter it posted on social media.

Jay Shah’s statement

Shah, who is also ACC president, in his statement had said: “The Asia Cup 2023 will be held at a neutral venue. I am saying this as ACC President. We [India] can’t go there [to Pakistan], they can’t come here. In the past also, the Asia Cup has been played at a neutral venue.”

Shah said this after the 91st BCCI annual general meeting in Mumbai, in the presence of new Board president Roger Binny.

‘BCCI to follow policy’

While speaking to reporters, he stressed that on the issue of playing with Pakistan, there is a policy in place and the BCCI will follow that. BCCI vice-president Rajeev Shukla, seated next to Shah, explained that the Board would need government clearance to play Pakistan.

Also read: New BCCI chief Roger Binny brings dignity, experience, expertise to the job

India last travelled to Pakistan for a bilateral series in 2005-06 under the captaincy of current Team India coach Rahul Dravid. However, India did travel to Pakistan in 2008 to compete in the Asia Cup.

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