Asia Cup 2023: Pakistan claims compensation from Asian Cricket Council

Pakistan was supposed to host the entire event of 2023 Asia Cup

Asia Cup 2023: Pakistan claims compensation from Asian Cricket Council PHOTO: AFP

The Asia Cup took place in 2023, and initially, Pakistan was supposed to host the entire event. However, due to India's refusal to visit Pakistan, the task of arranging more matches was assigned to Sri Lanka. Only four matches could be played on Pakistani grounds. The teams had to travel to Sri Lanka and back to Pakistan, incurring additional expenses. 

Now, Pakistan has demanded compensation for the expenses related to the chartered flights. The authorities said that the decision not to host the complete event in Pakistan was the Asian Council's, so additional expenses should also be borne by them. 

In a PCB management committee meeting, approval was given for the expenses of chartered flights. 

After the series against Afghanistan, the Pakistani team was scheduled to return home and then travel again to Sri Lanka for the next match. Besides India, other teams also had to travel. Flights were booked through the Sri Lankan company Classic Travel. They quoted a rate of $281,700 for four chartered flights, and all the money was demanded in advance.

Sources revealed that in the meeting, MC member Mussadiq Aslam had recommended securing arrangements from the travel agent before full payment.  It was told to him that they were going to do it, and it was also mentioned that, in order to reduce expenses, the board is also considering selling vacant seats on the plane to fans. 

However, it was indicated that such arrangements were not possible. Later, a friend of PCB official (not Zaka Ashraf)  with his family traveled on a chartered flight to Colombo. In the MC meeting, member Zulfiqar Malik expressed concerns regarding full payment to travel agency and termed it 'risky'. He suggested talking to a private Pakistani airline. GM Finance informed him that the Logistics team had taken quotes from all pre-qualified travel agents and reached this decision.

Expressing his reservations, MC granted approval for flight booking with non pre-qualified agent and 100% payment. For the Asia Cup, PCB agreed to pay Sri Lanka $2,069,885. Fifty percent and then 25% of the amount were paid before the event. The rest of the dollars were to be paid under the contract. 

According to the agreement, the Asian Cricket Council has to pay Pakistan a hosting fee of $250,000, while ticketing and sponsorship fees are separate. The estimated cost of the event was around $40,00,000.

According to the initial schedule, matches were supposed to be held only in Lahore, but PCB included Multan, organizing the inaugural match there. ACC is avoiding the payment of additional expenses by using this as an excuse. This matter will now be included in the agenda for the next meeting.