Indo-Pak cricket to resume once relations improve: PCB

Cricketing ties between India and Pakistan is likely to resume once relations between the two countries improve, says the newly elected Pakistan Cricket Board (PCB) chairman Najam Sethi.

“I have not closed any doors with India. The way I see, as soon as relations improve between Pakistan and India the BCCI should get permission from its government to play a bilateral series against us,” said Sethi, who has been officially elected as the 30th chairman of the PCB.

However, Sethi made it clear that the PCB would be pursuing its compensation claim against the BCCI before the ICC disputes resolution committee.

He reportedly said the PCB’s legal advisors had consulted a law firm in UK and “all preparations were complete to file the claim soon”.

Sethi, who is also set to take over as the chairman of the Asian Cricket Council (ACC) at the weekend in Colombo, said Pakistan would also demand that the Asia Cup under-19 tournament, scheduled in Bangalore in November, be moved to another neutral venue, a PTI report highlighted.

Stating that there were problems now with sending the Pakistan team to India, he reportedly insisted that the issue would be discussed at the ACC meeting.

Sethi was quoted as saying that the PCB has got the nod from the government to host the World XI in September and details were being worked out.

“We have held meetings with the Punjab top brass and talks are also being held with the players for the World XI. We will soon finalise dates and other security arrangements,” Sethi, who has replaced Shaharyar Khan, said.

Sethi has previously served as PCB Chairman intermittently in 2013 and 2014 and also served as head of the PCB’s executive committee during the tenure of Shaharyar Khan.

In 2013 and 2014, Sethi faced problems in governance as former chairman Zaka Ashraf and the government were involved in a litigation regarding the position.

The 69-year old, who was also caretaker chief minister of Punjab province before the last general elections, said he wanted to root out corruption and nepotism from Pakistan cricket at every level and lay the ground for a strong system. He reportedly said he would be “laying lot of stress on improvement of infrastructure at grass roots level”.

The PCB chief ruled out shutting down the women’s wing of the PCB after the disastrous performance by the national women’s team in the ICC World Cup but admitted he was disheartened about by their dismal show. “But that does not mean I want to shut down the women’s wing but we will take steps to improve things.”

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