Lahore, 15 June 2023: Najam Sethi, Chair of the PCB Management Committee, has thanked the Asian Cricket Council for accepting his hybrid model for the ACC Asia Cup 2023, which is now scheduled from 31 August to 17 September.
This will be the first time since 2008 that matches of a multi-nation cricket tournament will be staged in Pakistan. Fifteen years ago, Pakistan had successfully delivered the six-team ACC Asia Cup 50-over tournament.
Najam Sethi: “I am elated that our hybrid version for the ACC Asia Cup 2023 has been accepted. This means the PCB will remain as the event host and stage matches in Pakistan with Sri Lanka as the neutral venue, which was required due to the Indian cricket team’s inability to travel to Pakistan.
“Our passionate fans would have loved to see the India cricket team in action in Pakistan for the first time in 15 years, but we understand the BCCI’s position. Like the PCB, the BCCI also requires government approval and clearance before crossing borders.
“In this background, the hybrid model was the best solution and that’s precisely why I advocated for it so strongly. The acceptance of the hybrid model means the event will take place as originally planned, the ACC will stay together and united, and the great game of cricket will continue to thrive and move forward in what will be interesting and exciting times for the subcontinent cricket fans in the coming 20 months.
“In the past 15 months, the PCB has delivered high-profile bilateral series as well as two immensely successful HBL Pakistan Super League events in which some of the world’s leading cricketers participated and enjoyed Pakistan’s outstanding arrangements and unprecedented hospitality. We look forward to providing similar experience to the participating sides in the ACC Asia Cup, which will be a prelude to the ICC Champions Trophy in Pakistan in February/March 2025.
“I now look forward to continuing our discussions and deliberations with the ACC and Sri Lanka Cricket to iron out a few minor operational and logistical details so that we can launch our event planning and preparations.
“I want to assure the ACC, its commercial partners, participating countries, and the cricket fans in Pakistan and Sri Lanka that the PCB, as event hosts, will not leave any stone unturned in the successful delivery of the event that is so very critical to the sides featuring in the ICC Men’s Cricket World Cup 2023 in October/November in India.
“I appreciate the efforts of ACC President Jay Shah to strengthen the council so that we can collectively continue to protect each other’s interests and also provide opportunities and platforms to emerging Asian nations.”