Too much action has happened off the pitch before the coming Asia Cup. Instead of settling scores on the pitch, old foes are battling in the planning stages of the tournament. But what is the controversy about, and what does it mean for Team India?
Old Rivalries Resurface
Cricket fans and experts have been looking on at this ongoing controversy for a month and many thought it would be settled before any balls were struck in anger at the Asia Cup this year, but in typical fashion, it has become a long, drawn out, and tempestuous process so far, and the ripple effects will be felt throughout the tournament. Check this 威廉希尔奖金 to place your picks on who will win.
Team India pushed for a change early in preparations, arguing that a neutral venue would be more suitable for their group matches against Pakistan, rather than have the games hosted in Lahore as planned. This led to a tit-for-tat response from the Pakistan Cricket Board, insisting that if Team India did not play its games as scheduled then Pakistan would not attend the ODI World Cup set to be held in India later in 2023. Two of the world’s biggest cricket teams were holding both tournaments to ransom, and fans were caught in the middle.
Reaching An Impasse
Initially, a hybrid model that would allow games to be hosted in Sri Lanka as well as Pakistan was put forward to try and find a solution. Though the suggestion was widely mocked, and most insiders felt that the proposal would fall flat on its face, the Asian Cricket Council (ACC) accepted the plan and stated that four games would be played in Pakistan as planned, with nine other games held in Sri Lanka. Just when it seemed like the Cup would go ahead with any controversy behind it, Zaka Ashraf the incoming PCB chairman, said he rejected the plan and found it unacceptable.
Cooler Heads Must Prevail
Pakistan, as host of the Asia Cup, should have anticipated these problems, but so should the ACC. Team India could potentially face Pakistan three times over the course of the tournament, and each would be a tense affair even without this controversy. Now, emotions have only been heightened. It is easy to forget that there are still games of cricket to be played, and some big ones too. How the action behind the scenes affects the play on the day is anyone’s guess.
Someone has to win at the end of all this, after all. Team India has plenty of good form, and the hybrid model should work in their favor. Perhaps they are the team to bet on in this Asia Cup, especially against Pakistan. Things are already falling into place for them.
How the controversy will upset proceedings in the Asia Cup is still anyone’s guess. Team India certainly will be more settled and less stressed playing their games in Sri Lanka. With all the attention focused on cricket’s big two teams, India and Pakistan, could one of the other nations surprise everyone and become the talk of the tournament? We will have to wait and see, but not much longer.