BCCI Secretary denies accepting invitation to visit Pakistan


NEW DELHI: Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) Secretary Jay Shah on Wednesday denied reports claiming he had accepted an invitation to visit Pakistan after meeting with Pakistan Cricket Board’s (PCB) Zaka Ashraf.

The denial comes a day after Shah, who is also the president of the Asian Cricket Council, and PCB Interim Management Committee Chairman Zaka Ashraf met on the sidelines of International Cricket Council (ICC) meetings in Durban, South Africa.

The meeting between the two cricket board chiefs had taken place amid doubts about Pakistan visiting India for the World Cup, which is set to be staged from October 5 to November 19.

After the meeting, Minister for Inter-provincial Coordination Ehsanur Rehman Mazari had told media that Shah had accepted Ashraf’s invitation to visit Pakistan ahead of the Asia Cup

“I just spoke with Zaka Ashraf and he told me that he has invited Jay Shah to visit Pakistan and witness the security arrangements firsthand. Shah has accepted the invitation and has also invited Zaka in return to visit India ahead of the World Cup,” the minister said.

On Wednesday, both Shah and the BCCI denied that a Pakistan visit would be taking place.

 

“I have not agreed to anything. This is just plain miscommunication. Probably done deliberately or mischievously. I’ll not be making any visit,” Shah told News18 CricketNext.

The BCCI also said that “no such discussion” was held during the meeting between Shah and Ashraf.

“Neither India is travelling to Pakistan nor our secretary will be travelling contrary to reports that have surfaced,” BCCI official Arun Dhumal — who is also the chairman of the Indian Premier League — told Press Trust of India.

Dhumal was also in Durban for the ICC meeting. In his statement, he said that the meeting between Shah and Ashraf was held to finalise the schedule of the Asia Cup, which will be co-hosted by Pakistan and Sri Lanka under a “hybrid model” from August 31 to September 17.

“Our secretary met PCB head Zaka Ashraf and the Asia Cup schedule was finalised and it is on course as it was discussed earlier,” the official noted.

“There will be four games at the league stage in Pakistan, followed by nine games in Sri Lanka, including both India vs Pakistan games and a third game if both teams play the final,” he said.

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