The decision to move the Asia Cup to Sri Lanka in 2023 was controversial, and Asian Cricket Council (ACC) President Jay Shah on Wednesday defended the decision, citing Pakistan’s security situation and economic difficulties as justifications.
ACC and Shah came under fire for relocating the competition to the island country as the ongoing rains in the Sri Lankan towns hosting the games continue to interfere with the games.
Rain also caused the group-stage match between India and Pakistan to be postponed.
The final match of the continental tournament’s Pakistan leg will be today’s contest between Bangladesh and the hosts; all subsequent games will be held in Sri Lanka. However, there is the likelihood that the subsequent Super 4 matches would be impacted by severe rains.
Shah, who is also the secretary of the Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI), further defended his choice, claiming that other teams had shown reluctance to play in the United Arab Emirates (UAE) because of the heat, according to India Today.
At first, all the full members were unwilling to commit to holding the complete tournament in Pakistan, as well as the media rights holders and in-stadium rights holders. This hesitancy was caused by worries about the national security and economic climate, according to a statement from Shah.
As ACC president, I was dedicated to identifying a workable and amicable resolution. In order to do this, I had agreed to the hybrid approach that the Pakistan Cricket Board (PCB), in coordination with the ACC management, had suggested. However, it’s necessary to remember that the PCB’s leadership experienced a number of changes, which led to some back-and-forth talks, notably about critical issues like tax exemption and match insurance.
The T20 format was used in the UAE during the Asia Cup 2022. The fact that a T20 tournament’s dynamics cannot be easily matched to those of a 100-over One-day format must be emphasized. Concerns regarding playing One-Day matches in the UAE in September were raised by the high-performance teams of the ACC members in this situation. A schedule like that may have raised player tiredness and injury risk, especially in the weeks leading up to the crucial ICC Cricket World Cup.
Ahead of the ICC World Cup in India in 2023, Shah added that all choices relating the Asia Cup 2023 were taken with the players’ welfare in mind.
A true desire to put the players’ welfare and the larger interests of the sport first informed the decision-making process for the Asia Cup 2023 format and location. The ultimate objective was to find a compromise between maintaining the teams’ health and preparation for the ICC Cricket World Cup 2023 and allowing for a competitive and successful event, Shah said.
According to the Weather report: 81% percent chance of rain is expected throughout the day and 95 percent during the evening on Sunday.