Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) President Roger Binny has confirmed his tour to Pakistan as a board representative for an official dinner to be hosted by the Pakistan Cricket Board (PCB) in Lahore to commemorate their hosting of the tournament.
“Vice President Rajiv Shukla and I will arrive in Pakistan on September 4,” said Binny. It is likely Binny and Shukla will also attend a match at the Gaddafi Stadium on September 3 or 5 as part of their two-day visit, ESPNCricinfo reported.
The sports news agency added an official invitation was extended by Zaka Ashraf, the current PCB managing committee chairman, to the top brass of the BCCI on August 15 and that all top board members from the participating teams, including the BCCI, have confirmed their attendance.
Binny said: “I have no hesitation in going to Pakistan. My visits to Pakistan were always memorable, Pakistanis are very hospitable,” adding that he hoped his visit to Pakistan would benefit India-Pakistan cricket ties.
He further added that matches between India and Pakistan are bigger and more watched than the Ashes.
“Matches between Pakistan and India are important for cricket,” he said.
Binny’s remarks come against a backdrop of conflict between the two boards, a conflict that has been going on for several months due to a direct fallout of the political tensions between the two countries.
It is pertinent to note that Binny’s trip to Pakistan for the Asia Cup will be his first in 18 years. The BCCI president last visited the country in 2005 for the Asian Cricket Council camp.
Babar Azam (captain), Shadab Khan (vice-captain), Abdullah Shafique, Faheem Ashraf, Fakhar Zaman, Haris Rauf, Iftikhar Ahmed, Imam-ul-Haq, Mohammad Haris (wk), Mohammad Nawaz, Mohammad Rizwan (wk), Mohammad Wasim Jnr, Naseem Shah, Salman Ali Agha, Saud Shakeel, Shaheen Afridi and Usama Mir
Traveling reserve: Tayyab Tahir
Complete schedule of Asia Cup
Aug 30 – Pakistan vs Nepal in Multan
Aug 31 – Bangladesh vs Sri Lanka in Kandy
Sept 2 – Pakistan vs India in Kandy
Sept 3 – Bangladesh vs Afghanistan in Lahore
Sept 4 – India vs Nepal in Kandy
Sept 5 – Afghanistan vs Sri Lanka in Lahore
Sept 6 – A1 vs B2 in Lahore
Sept 9 – B1 vs B2 in Colombo
Sept 10 – A1 vs A2 in Colombo
Sept 12 – A2 vs B1 in Colombo
Sept 14 – A1 vs B1 in Colombo
Sept 15 – A2 vs B2 in Colombo
Sept 17 – Final in Colombo