Just a few months ago, Pakistan rejoiced as international cricket returned to the country. Fast forward to January 2020 and the cricket crazy nation finds itself in turmoil over staging the much-anticipated Asia Cup. Initially scheduled to be played in September 2020, the Pakistan Cricket Board's (PCB) plans to organise the multi-nation event is likely to be thwarted as arch-rivals India recently refused to travel to the country. As per reports, the Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) expressed their reluctance in sending their team to Pakistan, citing security concerns.
The upcoming 15th edition of the Asia Cup is intended to be only the second-ever to be played in the T20 format. The Asia Cup 2016 in Bangladesh was the first to be played using the shortest format of the game. Meanwhile, the 2018 edition of the Asia Cup was played in the traditional 50-overs format and was held in the United Arab Emirates (UAE). Defending champions India emerged victorious in both these tournaments.
According to multiple Indian reports on Thursday, the upcoming tournament is likely to be shifted out of Pakistan and alternate venues for the event are currently being considered. Bangladesh, Sri Lanka and Australia are currently the top contenders to stage the T20 Asian event. Incidentally, Australia are also hosting the ICC T20 Cricket World Cup 2020 just one month after the scheduled date of the upcoming Asia Cup and could well be the surprise favourites to host the event.
Ever since the 2008 Mumbai terror attacks, the BCCI has severed ties with the Pakistan Cricket Board (PCB) in staging any bilateral India vs Pakistan matches. However, Pakistan did tour India for a short limited-overs series in 2013. Apart from that, both teams have only been facing each other in multi-nation tournaments like the World Cup, T20 World Cup, Champions Trophy and the Asia Cup.
That's that from the Wankhede.— BCCI (@BCCI) January 14, 2020
Absolute domination by the Australian openers as Australia win the 1st ODI by 10 wickets and go 1-0 up in the three-match series.
Scorecard - https://t.co/yur0YuDrGa #INDvAUS pic.twitter.com/VF05mP0kg7