To play or not to play?

first_imgWith exactly 100 days to go for the World Cup in England, ICC would be feeling uneasy with clouds of uncertainty hovering around the mega event’s marquee India-Pakistan clash.While the ICC CEO Dave Richardson expressed confidence on Tuesday that the game will go ahead as per plan, he would be worried following statement from India’s law minister Ravi Shankar Prasad that those demanding that India boycott the Pakistan World Cup game cannot be wished away.”I cannot make any comment [on cricket issues] except to say those who are demanding it have some justification. You can see many films and concerts have been cancelled. Things are not normal,” Prasad told India Today.”Since it’s an international tournament, the ICC and our cricket board will have to take a call after consideration with our security establishment.But I don’t wish away their concern. It’s time to say no. Mr. Imran Khan had no words of condolence for those who were killed,” he said.The Indian cricket board (BCCI) has made it clear that they would be towing the government line on the issue. “BCCI’s position continues to be that it’s a decision that will be dictated by the Indian government. BCCI will go with whatever advise they receive from the government. If they ask us not to play, that’s the way it will be,” a senior BCCI official told India Today.BCCI currently finds itself in a peculiar position where it is run by Supreme Court appointed Committee of Administrators (COA). The matter is yet to be taken up by the COA members.advertisementBCCI Secretary Anirudh Chaudhary in an interesting take on matter opines, the BCCI can dictate terms with the ICC over non-participation in the World Cup. “The BCCI had resolved in an SGM in June 2018 that the members participation agreement shall not be executed without the general body authorization. So the BCCI reserves the right regarding it’s participation in any multi nation tournament,” he told India Today.But that’s talking of a confrontational path with the ICC which the BCCI old guard often employed to have their way. The current BCCI dispensation has rarely employed such strategy on the ICC table.With three months to go for World Cup kick off, ICC would hope wounds in India would heal. The matter is likely to be taken up on the sidelines of a series of ICC meetings starting Feb 27th in Dubai where BCCI as well as Pakistan Cricket Board (PCB) representatives would be present.Former BCCI Secretary Niranjan Shah has asked for the COA to involve all BCCI members in any decision on the matter.”BCCI’s decision on India-Pakistan has always been based on government advise. Any decision that BCCI COA takes should be after calling an SGM and taking into account all the members’ views,” he told India Today.If a larger pool of BCCI members sit to discuss the matter, it’s quite evident, losing two points in quest for semi finals qualification is not on top of everyone’s mind at the moment.Also Read | No chance of bilateral cricket with Pakistan after Pulwama: Sourav GangulyAlso Read | India should put pressure on ICC to throw Pakistan out of the World Cup: Chetan ChauhanAlso Read | World Cup not more important than the country, say Harbhajan and AzharuddinAlso Read | What will be the worth of a World Cup if India haven’t beaten Pakistan? Aakash ChopraAlso Read | India should not play Pakistan in 2019 Cricket World Cup: Harbhajan Singhlast_img

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