India need govt clearance to travel to other countries, can’t take decisions on our own: Roger Binny on Asia Cup issue

BCCI president Roger Binny on Thursday said that the government has to clear which country the Indian team travels to and the board can’t take decisions on its own. Binny said this when he was posed with a question on the recent decision of India to not travel to Pakistan for the 2023 Asia Cup.

“That isn’t our call. We can’t say where our team has to go. We need to take clearance from Govt if we leave the country, or other countries come here. We can’t take that decision on our own, we’ve to rely on govt,” Binny said as quoted by ANI.

The BCCI had made it clear on Tuesday that the Indian team won’t go across the border for the Asia Cup and it is now likely to be held at a neutral venue. BCCI secretary Jay Shah, who started a second term in office on Tuesday, said the Asia Cup – to be staged in the 50-over format ahead of the World Cup in India, will now have to be held somewhere else.

“The Asia Cup 2023 will be held at a neutral venue. I am saying this as ACC President. We [India] can’t go there [to Pakistan], they can’t come here. In the past also, the Asia Cup has been played at a neutral venue,” Shah had said after the 91st BCCI annual general meeting in Mumbai, in the presence of Binny.

While speaking to reporters, he stressed that on the issue of playing with Pakistan, there is a policy in place and the BCCI will follow that. BCCI vice-president Rajeev Shukla, seated next to Shah, had explained that the Board will need the government clearance to play Pakistan.

Expressing concerns about Shah’s statement, the PCB wrote on Wednesday: “The PCB has noted with surprise and disappointment of yesterday’s comments made by the ACC President Mr Jay Shah with regards to shifting of next year’s Asia Cup to a neutral venue. The comments were made without any discussion or consultation with the Board of the Asian Cricket Council or the Pakistan Cricket Board (event host) and without any thoughts towards their long-term consequences and implications.

“After having presided over the ACC meeting during which Pakistan was awarded the ACC Asia Cup with overwhelming support and response from the ACC Board Members, Mr Shah’s statement of shifting of the ACC Asia Cup has clearly been made unilaterally.

“This is contrary to the philosophy and spirit for which the Asian Cricket Council was formed in September 1983 – a united Asian cricket body to safeguard the interests of its Members and organise, develop, and promote the game of cricket in Asia,” PCB had said in a letter they posted on social media.

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