Roger Binny, the newly elected BCCI president, has spoken out regarding Team India's attendance at the Asia Cup in 2019. India's 1983 World Cup champion has made it clear that the government will make the final choice and that the board will follow that decision.
Speaking at an event hosted by the Karnataka State Cricket Association in this city, Binny stated that although the BCCI has not yet contacted the government about visiting Pakistan next year, the central government will ultimately make the decision.
“That is not BCCI’s call. We need government’s clearance to leave the country. Whether we leave the country or teams coming into the country, we need clearance.
“Once we get clearance from the government then we go with it. We can’t make decision on our own. We have to rely on the government. We have not approached them yet,” said World Cup winner Binny.
Prior to the ODI World Cup in India, the Asia Cup is slated to be played in Pakistan in September of the following year. Binny made his remarks after BCCI secretary Jay Shah declared that the Indian squad would prefer to play the Asia Cup at a neutral site rather than fly to Pakistan the next year.
Anurag Thakur, the sports minister, had earlier on Thursday stated that the Indian team will require permission from the Home Ministry before visiting Pakistan. On Wednesday, a "disappointed" Pakistan Cricket Board (PCB) asked the Asian Cricket Council to call an urgent meeting.
Referring to Shah’s comment, the PCB had said that “such statements can spilt the Asian and international cricket communities” and impact Pakistan’s visit to India for the 2023 World Cup.
After the November 26 Mumbai terror attack in that year, India hasn't visited Pakistan since the Asia Cup, and the planned bilateral series in early 2009 was postponed as a result.
However, there hasn't been any bilateral cricket between Pakistan and India in the previous ten years. In 2012, Pakistan did visit India for a brief six-match white-ball series. Only at various ICC and ACC competitions have the two teams faced off against one another.