India-Pakistan face-off in cricket means added excitement. The entire cricketing world looks forward to the match between the two arch-rivals. But due to the political instability of the two neighboring countries, India-Pakistan has not had any bilateral series for more than a decade. Two teams face each other only in ICC or other tournaments.
This time the fans are waiting for the turn? At least as Pakistan Cricket Board (PCB) chairman Zaka Ashraf has said, it might seem so. The PCB chairman said that the boards of both countries are ready to play against each other. They are just waiting for the permission of the government.
In 2008, after the terrorist attack in Mumbai, India’s relationship with Pakistan began to strain. That year was the last time the Indian cricket team toured Pakistan. Pakistan also toured India. But that also stops at some point. The last time the two teams met in a bilateral series on Indian soil was in 2012-13.
A bilateral series is unlikely in the near future due to the hostile relationship between the two ends. However, the PCB chairman made an interesting comment on this matter last Wednesday. The PCB’s official website quoted Zaka Ashraf as saying, ‘Talking about the India-Pakistan series, the boards of both countries are ready to play each other. Now only have to wait for the permission of the government!’
On the one hand, there is nothing to be excited about in this comment. The two boards agree, but the governments of the two countries do not – this has been happening for a long time. The Board of Cricket in India (BCCI) did not respond to the PCB chairman’s new statement.
However, last September, India’s Union Sports Minister Anurag Thakur said that no bilateral series between India and Pakistan will be held until Pakistan stops terrorism. At that time, Anurag told reporters, ‘BCCI had long ago decided that India will not play bilateral series against Pakistan until Pakistan stops terrorism, border attacks and infiltration.’
The last ICC tournament in the 2023 ODI World Cup was India-Pakistan clash at the Narendra Modi Stadium. India won that match by 7 wickets. The arch-rivals will face each other in the T20 World Cup match on June 9.