Pakistan Cricket Board (PCB) CEO Wasim Khan believes there is a possibility that the T20 World Cup, scheduled for next year in India, could be moved to the UAE due to the Covid-19 pandemic.
Due to the Covid-19 pandemic, the International Cricket Council (ICC) in August this year moved the T20 World Cup 2020 to 2022 while assuring that India would host the 2021 event in the agreed window from October 17 to November 14, 2021.
In an interview with Cricket Baaz on YouTube, Khan recently said that the increasing number of Covid-19 cases in India poses a health risk, which could force the ICC to move the mega event from India to the UAE.
“There is still some uncertainty about the World T20 being held in India… yes because of the Covid-19 case there. It could be in the UAE,” Khan said.
He also reiterated his position on requiring the International Criminal Court to assure that Pakistani players will not have any problems obtaining visas for the 2021 event if it is held in India.
“Yes, Mani Sahab (PCB Chair Ihsan Mane) wrote to them and asked them that given the state of relations between India and Pakistan, it would be better for the ICC and BCCI to provide a written confirmation of the visas being issued to us,” Khan said.
The 13th edition of the Indian Premier League, which was originally scheduled to take place from March to May, was scheduled to take place from September 29 to November 10 in the United Arab Emirates due to the Covid-19 case in India.
Bilateral cricket streak between India and Pakistan has always relied on political ties between the two Asian neighbors, and they haven’t played a test series against each other for 13 years. That was when Pakistan toured India in 2007 for a series of three tests while the last India tour was to Pakistan 14 years ago.
After that, Pakistan visited India for a short series of ODI and T20I in late 2012, and four years later it toured India again for the 2016 T20 World Cup.
Recently, the new President of the International Criminal Court, Gregor John Barclay, said that the ICC would like to see India and Pakistan play bilaterals regularly, and in each other’s territory, but also indicated that he does not have the mandate to ensure that actually happens.
“I don’t like more than India and Pakistan being able to continue cricket relationships as they used to be. I am also a realistic enough person to understand that there are geopolitical issues at play here which are outside my purview. I think all we can do in the ICC is continue to Help and support in any way possible to achieve results that would see India and Pakistan in a position where they can regularly play cricket against each other and in their own territories, Barkley said in a virtual media interaction on Monday.
Moreover, I don’t think I have a mandate or ability to influence results any more. And this is really done on a scale that goes beyond where we will be working.