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‘We don’t really want to go there...’ PCB chief Ramiz Raja not ready to compromise on Asia Cup stance

WION Web Team
Multan, PakistanUpdated: Dec 10, 2022, 08:17 PM IST
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Former PCB chief Ramiz Raja has slammed Salman Butt's appointment  Photograph:(AFP)

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In a chat with Michael Atherton for Sky Sports on day 2 of the ongoing Multan Test between Pakistan and England, Ramiz said, if the venue for the Asia Cup is shifted elsewhere, Pakistan is not keen on travelling to India for next year’s 50-over World Cup or for any tournament for that matter.

Pakistan’s cricket board chief Ramiz Raja has again insisted that Pakistan will not compromise on the whole situation of hosting Asia Cup next year if India continue to persist on their stance of not travelling to Pakistan. The ACC had earlier granted Pakistan the hosting rights for Asia Cup 2023, and now, with people close to the BCCI and the Indian government claiming that India might not go to Pakistan for the same, the venue could well be changed.

Speaking for the nth time on this matter, Ramiz said if the venue for the Asia Cup is shifted elsewhere, Pakistan is not keen on travelling to India for next year’s 50-over World Cup or for any tournament for that matter.

In a chat with Michael Atherton for Sky Sports on day 2 of the ongoing Multan Test between Pakistan and England, Ramiz said, “We don't want to really go there but it's just that the fans want us to react. The fans are absolutely bitter because of what India's narrative has been regarding India-Pakistan. I think there's a government policy and I've got no idea whether they'll come or not," he said. "The Asia Cup would mean a great deal to the fans, it's a multi-nation tournament. We will resist."

As India and Pakistan only compete in ICC related tournaments or in the Asia Cups, the fans are deprived of watching these two arch-rivals play in a bilateral series for a long time now. The last time both teams squared off outside of the ICC events was during the 2012-13 when Pakistan came to India for the white-ball series.

"I'm all for India-Pakistan contests, I've said this on record. I absolutely love the fans, and they like us as well - Pakistan has become a brand in international cricket, the players have got fan following in India, and I know that the second most watched team in India after India is Pakistan, so they take interest in our development," Raja said.

He added, "We want to go and play, but the fact is it has to be on equal terms. You can't be subservient to a certain cricket board. We've survived without India now for a good number of years. Pakistan have looked at the scales of economy in-house and somehow have survived extremely well."

As of now anything related to the change in venue for the Asia Cup next year is not announced.