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ICC cannot compel a board to play bi-lateral series: Zaheer

With the PCB indicating that it may raise the issue of India not agreeing on a bilateral series in the UAE with the ICC, the cricket world body’s President Zaheer Abbas today made it clear that they cannot be compelled to play against each other.

“Since the matter is a bilateral one between two boards the ICC can only talk to them but not compel them to play against each other bilaterally,” Zaheer told the media in Lahore.

Last week, BCCI Secretary Anurag Thakur had said that there will be no revival of cricketing relations between the two countries unless outstanding political and diplomatic issues are resolved.

Pakistan Cricket Board (PCB) Chairman Shaharyar Khan had also admitted that chances of the bilateral series between Pakistan and India in December taking place are now very slim.

A well-informed official told PTI that Shaharyar was very disappointed after the cancellation of the talks between the national security advisors of the two countries.

“He was also disappointed with the statement that followed from the Indian cricket board secretary Anurag Thakur regarding playing cricket with Pakistan,” the official said.

The source said that Shaharyar had dropped his plans to visit India for talks with BCCI and government officials to convince them to have the series in December in the United Arab Emirates.

“He is not going to India but the PCB will this week write to the BCCI a strong letter asking them to honour the MoU signed between the two boards and give a clear answer on the series,” the source added.

The source said that if India didn’t honour the MoU the PCB would try to raise the issue at the ICC executive board level since the December series was their home series.

“Whenever it is our home series we get this feeling India has avoided playing us since 2007 and we have incurred big losses. We even went to India in 2012/13 without taking any big money as a goodwill gesture. But now it is not just about cricket but also finances,” he said.