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ECB offers to host India-Pak Test matches

By Rediff Cricket
September 27, 2022 22:33 IST
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Meetings between India and Pakistan have been restricted to white-ball tournaments in recent years

IMAGE: Meetings between India and Pakistan have been restricted to white-ball tournaments in recent years. Photograph: Francois Nel/Getty Images

The England and Wales Cricket Board (ECB) says it would be ‘more than willing’ to host future Test matches between India and Pakistan.

 

In an interview with the Telegraph, an ECB spokesman said that it “would be more than willing to host an India v Pakistan Test if the opportunity arose” and that there would be “lots of grounds that would be interested in hosting.”

"The matches would attract big crowds in the UK, which has a large ex-pat south Asian population," it said.

"The matches attract huge sponsorship revenue and television audiences."

BCCI laughed off the suggestion.

"Firstly, ECB spoke to PCB about an Indo-Pak series and that's a bit weird. In any case, a series against Pakistan is not something that the BCCI will decide but it is the decision of the government. As of now, the stance remains the same. We only play Pakistan at multi-team events," a senior BCCI official privy to India's position told PTI on Tuesday.

However, the paper made it clear that even "PCB is not keen on playing India at neutral venue but are grateful for the ECB's offer, which shows the growing relationship between the two boards."

The arch rivals haven’t faced each other in red-ball cricket since 2007.

Meetings between India and Pakistan have been restricted to white-ball tournaments in recent years while Pakistan players are not allowed to play in the Indian Premier League. The ban has now extended to the new South Africa T20 league, in which all teams have Indian owners.

Pakistan last played limited overs tournament in India in December 2012.

In recent times India and Pakistan have faced off in ICC tournaments as well as the Asia Cup, drawing massive crowds as well as pulling in record TV viewership.

India face Pakistan in the T20 World Cup at the MCG on October 23.

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