BCCI ‘shocked’ over talks of Asia Cup in Sri Lanka; IPL top priority

With the Indian Premier League being the top priority, the Board of Control for Cricket in India will not accommodate any other series or tour in its itinerary after a final word on the ICC T20 World Cup in Australia is out.

In such a scenario, the BCCI is dismayed over the talks of the six-nation Asia Cup being shifted to Sri Lanka. The tournament, in the T20 format, were to be hosted in the UAE by the Pakistan Cricket Board as a warm-up event for the T20 World Cup 2020.

Such is the level of frustration of the BCCI that is declined to “participate in the Asia Cup” if it chews into the IPL schedule. “Let’s be clear about that first. There won’t be a truncated IPL just to host an Asia Cup. Those thinking on such lines are clearly not speaking in India’s interests and the BCCI will not be party to it,” a BCCI source has told to national daily Times of India.

The BCCI has taken a very strong objection to the Sri Lanka Cricket Chief Shammi Silva’s statement that the Asian Cricket Council during its tele-conference last week had in principle agreed to shift the Asia Cup to Sri Lanka.

“We had a discussion with Pakistan Cricket Board and they have already agreed to our hosting this edition due to the present world situation. We had an online ACC meeting and they basically gave us the green light to host the tournament,” Silva was quoted as saying. He has further added that SLC had added to host the event.

BCCI, strongly objecting to Silva’s statement, has said that no decision was taken at the meeting. “We have no idea where such reports are coming from and we’re surprised how fast these reports travel. The BCCI is clear that no decision was taken at the ACC meeting,” the report has quoted well-placed sources in the board as saying.

The broadcaster – Star Sports, which holds the IPL and the ACC media rights – too will only see commercial viability in the Indian league. “Even the World Cup in England was a loss-making event for the broadcaster and we’re talking about an Asia Cup here. The IPL is a different beast altogether. Who’re these people who refuse to understand the numbers? It’s in Indian cricket’s best interests to host the IPL. What are we going to cater to? India’s interests or PCB’s interests?” the paper further quoted industry experts as saying.

The Indian side also added that the Asia Cup was to be played as a warm-up event for the T20 World Cup. If the World Cup were to be delayed why not the Asia Cup.

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