As per the latest developments, the Asia Cup 2022 is likely to shift to the UAE amid the ongoing political crisis in Sri Lanka. The mega event was scheduled to be played in the island nation but the aftermath of the political unrest in the country has forced the ACC (Asian Cricket Council) to explore the possibility of conducting the tournament at a different venue.
Meanwhile, Sri Lanka Cricket Board is still confident of hosting the six-team event successfully despite the severe turbulence on the economic and political fronts. At the same time, the UAE has emerged as the frontrunner to host the Asia Cup 2022 if the ACC decides to move the tournament out of the island nation.
“Hosting the Asia Cup 2022 is not appropriate in such a scenario” – An ACC member
As per the latest reports, the member nations of the Asian Cricket Council (ACC) have already started to explore alternatives and opened discussions with the Emirates Cricket Board (ECB) in the UAE. The multination event is scheduled to be played from the 27th of August to the 11th of September.
Ahead of the tournament, Hong Kong, Kuwait, Singapore, and UAE will play the Qualifier and the winner of the Qualifier will join five teams, including India, Afghanistan, Bangladesh, Pakistan, and Sri Lanka in the main event.
“In such a scenario, it is being felt that hosting the championship is not appropriate,” a member of the ACC told Cricbuzz on Saturday.
Notably, Sri Lanka recently hosted Australia for a full tour, including Tests, ODIs, and T20Is. Also, Pakistan is currently touring Sri Lanka for a two-Test series.
Amidst all the developments, Pakistan Cricket Board (PCB) has extended their support to the SLC.
“Our first preference is to support Sri Lanka and play the Asia Cup there. If this tournament does not take place in Sri Lanka, it will be a huge cricketing and financial loss for them. Australia’s recent tour of Sri Lanka went off without any problems,” said Faisal Hasnain, the PCB CEO.
“Similarly, there have been no issues with the ongoing Pakistan tour of Sri Lanka as we are constantly in touch with Sri Lanka Cricket (SLC) and our embassy in the country. Our discussions with the ACC representatives have suggested that the tournament is on track at the moment as they are monitoring the situation very carefully and we will support their decision,” he further added.