After the International Cricket Council (ICC) announced Pakistan as the host of the Champions Trophy in 2025, there has been a question on every cricket fan’s mind whether Team India will travel to neighbouring country or not.
Due to political tensions between the two nations, bilateral cricket has been suspended since a long time however, the two sides now only meet each other in ICC events.
Responding to a question on the issue, Indian Union Minister for Youth Affairs and Sports Anurag Thakur has nowsaid that the Indian government and the home ministry will make a call on India’s participation when the time comes.
“When the time will come, the Indian government and the home ministry will take a decision. During the international championships, all the factors are looked upon,” Thakur said.
“Even in the past, many countries have refused to play in Pakistan due to security concerns. As you all know, many players were even attacked while playing over there and that’s a big issue to be dealt with,” he added.
Pakistan has been largely starved of international cricket particularly since the 2009 attack on the touring Sri Lanka team bus in Lahore.
Earlier on Tuesday, the ICC had announced Pakistan as the host for the 2025 Champions Trophy.
Significantly, Pakistan had last staged an ICC event in 1996 when they co-hosted the 50-over World Cup with India and Sri Lanka and it will now be after 29 years when an ICC event returns to the country.
The hosts were selected via a competitive bidding process overseen by a Board sub-committee chaired by Martin Snedden along with Sourav Ganguly and Ricky Skerritt. The ICC Board accepted the recommendations of the committee who conducted a thorough review of each bid along with ICC management.
Earlier, Pakistan Cricket Board (PCB) newly appointed chairman Ramiz Raja had brushed aside the fears of any last-minute pullouts by the teams from the showpiece event.
“It is not going to happen. They [ICC] went through all the pros and cons and after going through the details, came to the conclusion that Pakistan is fit enough to host and administer the Champions Trophy. You shouldn’t worry at all. I don’t think there will be any negativity or any pullouts at all,” said the PCB chairman.
“We won’t be going to the UAE for the Asia Cup or the Champions Trophy. Not everything happens because of India. We are also here. Don’t worry,” he added.