Champions Trophy draft: India-Pakistan match on March 1, BCCI’s approval awaited

The Pakistan Cricket Board (PCB) has tentatively scheduled its Champions Trophy match against arch-rivals India for March 1 next year even as the BCCI (Board of Control for Cricket in India) is yet to give its consent to it, a senior International Cricket Council (ICC) board member told PTI on Wednesday.

The tournament will be played from February 19 to March 9 next year, with March 10 being a ‘reserve day’. It has been learned that PCB chairman Mohsin Naqvi has submitted a 15-match schedule in which India’s matches have been kept in Lahore due to security and ‘logistical’ reasons. Naqvi was invited to Barbados to watch the T20 World Cup final.

The ICC board member said, “The PCB has submitted a draft of the 15-match schedule of the ICC Champions Trophy in which seven matches have been scheduled in Lahore, three matches in Karachi and five matches in Rawalpindi.” The source said, “The first match has been scheduled in Karachi while the two semi-finals will be held in Karachi and Rawalpindi while the final will be held in Lahore. All the matches of India (including the semi-final in case the team qualifies) have been scheduled in Lahore.”

India has been placed in Group A along with Pakistan, Bangladesh and New Zealand. Group B includes Australia, South Africa, England and Afghanistan. Recently, ICC tournament chief Chris Tetley met PCB chairman Naqvi in ‚Äč‚ÄčIslamabad. Earlier, the security team of the world body inspected the venue and other arrangements. The last time Pakistan hosted the Asia Cup in 2023 was in a ‘hybrid model’ in which India played its matches in Sri Lanka as the government did not allow the players to travel across the border.

The source said, “All the board heads of the participating countries of the ICC Champions Trophy (other than BCCI) have given full support but BCCI will update the ICC after consulting the government.” At the same time, ICC cannot force any board to go against the policy of its government, so it will be interesting to see when BCCI takes a decision in this matter.

Disclaimer: CricketInFocus has not edited this news. This news has been published from PTI-language feed.

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