Indian government rejects cricket series with Pakistan
MUMBAI (92 News) – Cricket fans have to wait a while longer for India and Pakistan to resume their famed rivalry as the Indian government has on Friday signaled the Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) that it is not in favor of playing with the neighbor, even in a neutral venue like Sri Lanka.
In an interview with an Indian newspaper, a top BCCI official said that the government has given them an indication that public sentiment at the moment is against Pakistan. Also, there are only a few days left for the proposed series to start (in the latter half of December).
He said that if the government wanted them to play, they would have got clearance a long time ago. So, I don’t think this series is happening. The Indian government is also believed to have disapproved of the public statements made by some BCCI officials.
An external affairs ministry spokesperson, when asked about the request pending with the ministry, said, “We are yet to take a decision.” The BCCI secretary Anurag Thakur echoed this, saying the board had not received any official word from the government.
The BCCI had sought the government’s permission for a short ODI and T20 series against Pakistan in Sri Lanka sometime after December 15 — a week after its ongoing series against South Africa and before it travels to Australia in January.
The Lanka tie had seemed a certainty with Pakistan Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif giving it the nod on November 26.
It was to be played as part of an MoU agreement between the two boards to hold six bilateral series between 2015 and 2023. After several rounds of discussion and various venue possibilities, Sri Lanka had emerged the choice while there has also been talk of a Test series in England sometime next year.