Pakistan’s sports-minister Ehsaan Mazari has said that if India insists to play Asia Cup 2023 at neutral venue, Pakistan will adapt tit-for-tat policy for the World Cup 2023, adding his country might end up withdrawing from the ICC event.
While speaking to The Indian Express, Mazari said if India demands to play their Asia Cup games at a neutral venue, then Pakistan would also make similar demand for World Cup 2023.
“My personal opinion, since the Pakistan Cricket Board comes under my ministry, is that if India demands to play their Asia Cup games at a neutral venue, we would also demand the same for our World Cup games in India,” he said.
Mazari’s statement came a day after Pakistan Prime Minister Shehbaz Sharif formed a high-profile committee to evaluate the issue of the country’s participation in World Cup 2023.
Mazari said that the committee will be headed by Foreign Minister Bilalwal Bhutto Zardari, and it will the discuss the issue. “We will discuss the issue and give our recommendations to the PM, who is also the patron-in-chief of PCB. The PM will take the final decision,” he added.
Commenting on India’s reservation over the adequate security measures for Indian players in Pakistan, minister said that India’s case in this matter is not strong.
“India brings sports into politics. I don’t understand why the Indian government does not want to send their cricket team here. Some time back baseball contingent from India was in Islamabad. There were around 60 plus people, I was the chief guest of the event. The won here and left, Pakistan’s football, hockey and chess teams also travel to India,” he added.