Thursday, June 22, 2023

Zaka Ashraf, the likely head of the PCB, rejects the "hybrid model" for the Asia Cup, putting BCCI at odds

 Delhi, India: The "hybrid model" for the upcoming Asia Cup, which will be held in Pakistan and Sri Lanka in September, was rejected by Zaka Ashraf, the likely new chairman of the Pakistan Cricket Board (PCB). Wednesday, during a press conference in the Pakistani capital, Ashraf voiced his disagreement with the model.

"The first thing is that I had previously rejected the hybrid model (for the Asia Cup) because I disagreed with it. "We should host it because the Asian Cricket Council board had decided that it should be held in Pakistan," Ashraf stated.

The Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) is anticipated to take a firm stance as well, as Ashraf's position could potentially jeopardize Pakistan's World Cup participation. As a five-nation tournament, the Asia Cup could be held without Pakistan's participation if Pakistan deviates from the agreed-upon decision of the Asian Cricket Council (ACC).

"The ACC has accepted the Asia Cup model, and there would be no change. "Ashraf is free to say anything he wants," a member of the ACC board clarified.

Prime Minister Shahbaz Sharif, who is the patron-in-chief of the board and has final say over appointments, selected Zaka Ashraf as one of the two candidates for the PCB chairman position. At this point, it is anticipated that Ashraf's appointment will merely be a formality.

After India made it clear that due to the current geopolitical situation, they would not travel to Pakistan, the hybrid model was approved by the ACC, led by Jay Shah of the BCCI. The model suggested that Sri Lanka, Bangladesh, and Afghanistan would all play in Lahore, while Pakistan would host four games, including the group league match against Nepal.

However, after Sethi announced on Twitter that he was resigning, the situation took a dramatic turn in the last 48 hours. Sethi's decision was based on the PCB's instability and unpredictability.

Ashraf, a banker by trade, was the PCB chairman in the past. He voiced his disapproval of insignificant matches being held in Pakistan when they had been granted the hosting rights during the press conference.

"All major matches are taking place outside of Pakistan. "It is not fair for Pakistan that teams like Nepal and Bhutan will play in Pakistan," Ashraf remarked, highlighting the perceived unfairness. He stated that he would evaluate the board's previous decisions and take the appropriate action for Pakistan's benefit.

Additionally, Ashraf acknowledged that Pakistan's participation in the World Cup has not yet been resolved, suggesting that the announcement of the tournament's schedule may experience additional delays.

"There are difficulties arranged ahead for Pakistan, there are numerous forthcoming issues, the Asia Cup is there, then the World Cup, the group's arrangements, a great deal of issues. "Because I have not yet taken over, I do not want to speak against anyone," Ashraf stated without commenting on Sethi's statement.

Due to the expectation that neither the BCCI nor the ICC will accept Pakistan's demands for neutral venues for World Cup matches, Ashraf's firm stance on the Asia Cup is likely to further strain relations with both organizations.

It is important to note that Pakistan and India played their last bilateral series in 2012, when Zaka Ashraf was the PCB chairman.

Catch Daily Highlights In Your Email

* indicates required

Post Top Ad