LAHORE-The Pakistan Cricket Board (PCB) remains unwavering in its position on the Asia Cup, World Cup, and Champions Trophy 2025 issues. In a meeting with ICC Chairman Greg Barclay and Chief Executive Geoff Allardice, the PCB reiterated its commitment to abide by the government’s instructions concerning the Pakistan team’s participation in the upcoming mega events scheduled to be held in India.
Financial concerns have also been raised, prompting a second round of talks between PCB and ICC officials scheduled for today (Wednesday). The hosting board has expressed reservations about the ICC’s financial model. On the other hand, Bangladesh has made the decision of the ACC final in the matter of the Asia Cup. Jalal Younis, Chairman of Cricket Operations for the Bangladesh Cricket Board (BCB), stated, “Whatever model is adopted, we are ready to play. If it is decided by consensus to hold the competition in the UAE, then we have to play there as well.”
The refusal of the Indian team to travel to Pakistan for the Asia Cup scheduled in September this year has caused confusion regarding several international events. In response to this complex situation, the PCB proposed a hybrid model, suggesting that five matches be played in Pakistan while the remaining matches take place at a neutral venue during the initial phase.
Najam Sethi, Head of the PCB Management Committee, has repeatedly stated that if disagreements persist regarding the hybrid model, the Pakistani government may decide not to allow the national team to participate in the World Cup in India. The BCCI also took a clear position during a meeting with ACC members, insisting that the entire event should be hosted by a single country, considering the intense heat in the UAE and Sri Lanka.
Efforts are underway to organize the tournament, and the final decision will be made during the ACC Executives meeting, which will also involve the PCB. However, due to the interconnected nature of these issues, the complications surrounding the Asia Cup, World Cup, and Champions Trophy 2025, which Pakistan is set to host, have intensified.
Meanwhile, the arrival of ICC Chairman Greg Barclay and Chief Executive Geoff Allardice in Lahore holds significant importance. Both officials arrived at Allama Iqbal Airport from Dubai and were provided with tight security as they were escorted to their hotel. At Gaddafi Stadium, PCB Chief Operating Officer Salman Naseer, accompanied by other officials, warmly welcomed the guests. Discussions on the Asia Cup and related matters took place during the meeting.
The sources revealed that the PCB has restated its position on traveling to India for the World Cup, affirming its commitment to comply with the government’s instructions regarding participation in the ICC World Cup. The PCB also expressed concerns about the ICC’s financial model, although no progress has been made regarding an increase in the board’s share of revenue. Further negotiations between PCB and ICC officials are scheduled for today (Wednesday).