The 2023 edition of the Asia Cup will kick off from August 30 onwards in Pakistan. Owing to Indian government’s stance amid the political tension between the two neighbouring nations, BCCI and PCB agreed to a hybrid model for the continental tournament. While Pakistan were the primary hosts, having earned the rights earlier, India’s decision to not send their team to Pakistan led to Sri Lanka being picked up as an alternate location with the agreement being that Lahore and Multan will host four matches between themselves while the remainder of the tournament will be played in the island nation. With still a fortnight left before the tournament kicks off in Multan, BCCI Secretary and President of Asian Cricket Council (ACC), Jay Shah, has been invited by Pakistan Cricket Board (PCB) to attend the opener between Pakistan and Nepal.
According to a report in PTI, PCB revealed that besides Shah, heads of other cricketing bodies of the ACC have also been invited for the match. In fact, a more well-informed PCB source added that the invitation was sent to the ACC chief out of hope than any realistic expectation of him visiting Pakistan.
“The PCB has basically followed up on the invitation which was extended verbally by Chairman Zaka Ashraf to Jay Shah when they both met in Durban for the ICC meeting,” the source said.
The report added that PCB heads were left red faced after Shah revealed that he did accept the invitation, contrary to the claims made by Pakistan media. “The PCB was obviously embarrassed after the Pakistani media reported that Jay Shah had accepted Zaka Ashraf’s invitation and the Indian board official later flatly denied this,” he said.
The 2023 Asia Cup will be played between from August 30 to September 17 across four venues. In Pakistan, four matches will be staged – one in Multan and three others in Lahore’s Gaddafi Stadium which includes two group-stage matches and a knockout game. In Sri Lanka, Pallekele and Colombo will be the two venues.
India will open their campaign from September 2 onwards against arch-rivals Pakistan at the Pallekele International Cricket Stadium and will play their second group game against Nepal at the same venue two days later.
Colombo’s R Premadasa Stadium will be staging five of the six Super Four matches between September 9 and 14 before wrapping up the tournament with the finale on September 17.
Source : Hindustan Times