India is not going to Pakistan for Asia Cup 2023 matches, but both teams will play competitive cricket as they are seeded in the same group at this tournament.
The Pakistan Cricket Board (PCB) and Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) are looking to work out a plan to allow both teams play against each other at neutral venues in the forthcoming Asia Cup 2023.
There is a plan for India v Pakistan at the Asia Cup 2023 to take place in Oman, Bangladesh, UAE, Sri Lanka, or England. Reporters spoke to an inside source about the latest development and this was the official’s comment:
“A meeting between the boards had been done … and the tournament will be allowed to be held in Pakistan. India will play their matches at a neutral venue and will not travel to Pakistan; the venues where India could play their matches are likely to be Oman, UAE, England, Sri Lanka and Bangladesh. Though the decision will be decided later”
Why Does India Have to Play Pakistan in the Asia Cup 2023?
The Asia Cup 2023 is a six-nation tournament played in a fifty-over format scheduled to take place in Pakistan this September. Groupings for teams in the tournament saw Indian and Pakistan in the same tie with one qualifier. Bangladesh, Sri Lanka, and Afghanistan form the other group in this regional series.
Thirteen games will take place in this tournament with India scheduled to meet Pakistan at least once. Top qualifiers (best two teams) from each group will progress to the semi-finals or ‘Super 4s’ to compete with other qualifiers.
If everything goes as planned and India and Pakistan go all the way; both teams may lock horns again in the final game. Pakistan currently holds the rights to host this year’s Asia Cup barring any last-minute events that might change their status.
Controversy Surrounding the Venue for India v Pakistan
Recent controversy around India’s forthcoming cricket game with Pakistan started in October 2022 when BCCI secretary and ACC President, Jay Shah, confirmed that India will not travel to Pakistan for any match at the Asia Cup 2023.
PCB officials responded barely 24 hours after this comment, stating their surprise at such a stance from the BCCI. PCB officials complained about not being consulted before the BCCI came up with such a decision. The Pakistan cricket body also claimed they did not receive any notice about the development from Asian Cricket Council (ACC) officials.
In their statement, the PCB commented that comments from Jay Shah were enough to further create divisions between Asian and global cricket bodies. PCB officials also claimed the sudden pull-out of India might affect Pakistan’s visit to India for the next ICC Cricket World Cup.
The long PCB statement also claimed Pakistan will boycott all matches in India across ICC events until 2031; if the BCCI does not resolve their longstanding issue of selecting venues for matches.
When Will India v Pakistan Have an Official Venue?
Pakistan v India does not have a set venue at the moment. Cricketers from the PCB and BCCI are still consulting to decide a suitable venue for both teams.
When Do India and Pakistan Play Each Other?
India and Pakistan only face each other in cricket matches organized by the ACC or ICC. Decades-long friction between both neighbors have affected much more than their cricket schedules in recent years. Both teams have not met in a competitive cricket game outside ICC or ACC event since 2013.
Why is Pakistan Unable to Host India for Cricket Matches at Home?
Few events in the late 2000s caused significant damage to Pakistan’s image as a safe location for hosting cricket matches. Pakistan recovered eventually; and have hosted the West Indies, Zimbabwe, England, New Zealand, Afghanistan, and other countries in the 2010s and beyond.
However, the rift between Pakistan and India started and still continues after terrorists from Pakistan carried out an attack on an Indian hotel in 2008.
Many terrorists from Pakistan crossed into Mumbai and were able to kill over 160 civilians and wound 200+ more people in a brazen attack. The aftermath of this attack had serious effects on Pakistan’s already-strained relationship with India at the time.
Players with Pakistani nationality are still banned from featuring in the Indian Premier League. India also does not travel to games hosted in India and many countries followed suit for years. The PCB also encountered severe battering to their image; when Sri Lankan national team players were injured in a bomb blast in 2009. Security in Pakistan for visiting teams have improved since then; but tensions between India and this year’s Asia Cup 2023 host are still very heightened