Pakistan Cricket Board chairman Ehsan Mani has confirmed they will not run after the Board of Control for Cricket in India but they are ready to play the bilateral series against India. Both the teams have not played any bilateral series for a long time and they only take on each other in the major tournaments of the ICC like the World Cup or Asia Cup.
Both the arch-rivals don’t lock horns with each other due to the political tensions between the two countries. India and Pakistan’s relations have always been soured since Independence but they have time and again played a bilateral series. However, things have worsened since the Pulwama attack in February 2019.
In fact, the last time both of these teams played a bilateral series against each other was back in 2013 in India, when they played three ODIs and two T20I matches.
The Indian government has not given permission to the BCCI to play against Pakistan and both the teams last took on each other in the league stage match of the 2019 World Cup, which India won easily.
“I have taken the view, and I have let it be known to the BCCI, that we are always there to play, but we are not going to be running after them. It is their call when they are ready to play, we will be willing to play,” Mani said during a discussion with cricket authors Peter Oborne and Richard Heller in a podcast.
In fact, former Pakistan bowlers like Waqar Younis and Shoaib Akhtar feel India and Pakistan should play bilateral series with each other. Akhtar had suggested that the funds can be raised for the coronavirus patients if both the teams play against one another.
However, former Indian captain Kapil Dev and Sunil Gavaskar had rubbished the proposal made by Shoaib Akhtar. In fact, Gavaskar had stated there are more chances of snow in Lahore than a bilateral series between India and Pakistan in the immediate future.
Both the teams were expected to take on each other in the Asia Cup but the tournament has been postponed to 2021. Initially, Pakistan were to host the event but BCCI had refused to travel there and thus requested for the change in venue. Sri Lanka is now expected to stage the event in 2021.