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T20 World Cup next year could be shifted to UAE due to COVID-19 ‘uncertainty’ in India: PCB

Image Source : PTI

Shikhar Dhawan, Virat Kohli and Ajinkya Rahane

Pakistan Cricket Board CEO Wasim Khan feels next year’s ICC World T20 could be shifted to the UAE as “some element of uncertainty” still remains over whether India would be in a position to host the event because of the COVID-19 pandemic.

“There is still some uncertainty over the World T20 being held in India…yes because of the Covid situation there. It could be in UAE,” Khan said in an interview to the Cricket Baaz YouTube channel.

Reminded that India had planned to host a home series against England and also the IPL in the first quarter of 2021, Khan said a clear picture would come only by April.

The ICC has awarded the 2021 World T20 to India and Australia will now host the 2022 edition with the 50-over World Cup also scheduled to be held in India in 2023.

Khan also reiterated that the PCB was waiting for a written confirmation from the ICC and BCCI by January on issuance of visas to the Pakistan squad for the World T20 in India.

“Yes Mani Sahab (PCB chief Ehsan Mani) has written to them and requested them that given the state of relations between India and Pakistan, it would be best if the ICC and BCCI gives a written assurance about the visas being issued to us,” Khan said.

He also disclosed that an online meeting of the Asian Cricket Council last week had tentatively set June as the time to host the postponed Asia Cup in Sri Lanka but the dates could be rescheduled if required.

“The next Asia Cup will be hosted in Sri Lanka in June and we have got hosting rights now for the 2022 Asia Cup,” he said.

Khan said that although bilateral series with India is still a distant reality because of the border tensions between the two countries, it is ICC’s responsibility to guarantee participation of all nations in any world event.”But yes bilateral relations are not ideal and that is why we have also asked for the assurances for next year’s World Cup,” he said.

But the PCB CEO hoped that in future the situation could change as far as cricket relations are concerned between Indian and Pakistan. 

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