Pakistan not yet decided to take part in Cricket World Cup, says Najam Sethi 

F.P. Report

LAHORE: Pakistan Cricket Board (PCB) Management Committee Chairman Najam Sethi has said that the board has not yet taken any decision regarding playing the World Cup in India. 

 Addressing a press conference in Lahore on Friday, he said PCB and BCCI cannot take any decision independently regarding playing in India and Pakistan. “This decision is made by the governments of both countries,” Najam Sethi said, adding that ICC has been informed that we will do whatever the government orders us.

To a question, he said it was up to Prime Minister Shehbaz Sharif, patron of the PCB, and former president Asif Ali Zardari to select either him or Zaka Ashraf as the next board chairman.

“I have heard speculations surrounding PCB chairmanship. I don’t get involved in this matter because it depends on the patron,” he said.

“Our responsibility was to restore the 2014 constitution. At this point, we are ready for elections with regional and departmental representatives on board. We are waiting for two nominees after which I will announce the election,” he added. 

Sethi expressed his thoughts on the upcoming Asia Cup, saying, it took a lot of hard work to get here. “The journey began with the team’s invitation to Zimbabwe in 2015, he said adding that World XI and then Sri Lankan teams came to Pakistan.

“Now engaging and convincing the stakeholders of the significance of the hybrid model was challenging. I held several meetings in Dubai – some of them were secret and others a matter of public knowledge. We also held multiple calls on Zoom to convince others to accept the hybrid model”.

“You will realize later how the hybrid model could work as a negotiating tool between India and Pakistan,” he added. “Now we conclude that after 15 long years, a multilateral tournament is going to take place in Pakistan,” Sethi hinted. 

PCN management committee chairman said that the journey to bring back the multilateral tournament to the country was started by holding the final of the Pakistan Super League (PSL) in Lahore in 2017,” Sethi asserted.

He said, due to logistical problems, it is not possible to hold more than four matches of the Asia Cup in Pakistan. This is very important that finally, a multilateral tournament is going to happen in the country”.

He said the rest of the matches had been shifted to Sri Lanka, not the United Arab Emirates (UAE), due to very warm weather in the Middle East.

He said he observed that bogus news was being published in the Indian media. The hybrid model is a solution to a decade-long issue between India and Pakistan”.

“I am happy that the hybrid model was considered as a solution and the Asia Cup is going to happen, he concluded.