Reason revealed behind PCB’s refusal to play ODI series in Sri Lanka

The Pakistan Cricket Board had initially shown openness to the proposal of playing an ODI series alongside the two-match Test series, but later changed its stance

Reason revealed behind PCB’s refusal to play ODI series in Sri Lanka PHOTO: AFP

The Pakistan Cricket Board (PCB) is displeased with Sri Lanka Cricket expressing their interest in hosting the entire Asia Cup 2023 and, as a result, has rejected their proposal for an ODI series in the Lankan home soil.

The relationship between the PCB and SLC intensified when the latter voiced their preference to host the Asian tournament instead of following Najam Sethi's proposed 'Hybrid Model'. This model suggested holding four matches in Pakistan initially and then moving the second phase to UAE.

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According to a report by Press Trust of India (PTI), the strained relations between the two boards is the reason why PCB rejected Sri Lanka's proposal to play a few ODI matches alongside their two-Test series in July this year, which is part of the World Test Championship (WTC). 

"It is a clear indication that the PCB is not happy with the Sri Lankan board stepping in to offer to host the Asia Cup in September when it is Pakistan's turn to host the regional event at home," PCB source told PTI.

The board had initially shown openness to the proposal but later changed its stance. Chairman of the Pakistan Cricket Board (PCB) Management Committee, Najam Sethi, also expressed disappointment with the reactions from the Bangladesh and Afghanistan boards as well, as they did not support his hybrid model proposal for the Asia Cup 2023. 

The report further added that Sethi had anticipated that Sri Lanka, a nation with which Pakistan has historically maintained amicable ties, as well as Bangladesh and Afghanistan, would use their influence to persuade other members of the Asian Cricket Council, including the Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI), to contemplate playing three to four matches in Pakistan before shifting the tournament elsewhere.

"Sethi expected Sri Lanka with whom Pakistan has long had friendly relations, Bangladesh and Afghanistan to convince the BCCI and other Asian Cricket Council board members to go with the proposal put by Sethi and at least play three to four games in Pakistan of the Asia Cup before moving the tournament elsewhere," the source added.