The Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) has confirmed no Pakistan player will be part of the Asia XI side that will take on World XI in an exhibition match in March. The star-studded affair will comprise of two T20 games hosted by Bangladesh in an effort to commemorate the birth centenary of Sheikh Mujibur Rahman, the founder of Bangladesh.
Clearing their stance on Pakistan’s participation in the Asia XI-World XI encounters, BCCI has claimed no player from their rival nation will be invited to the squad.
Imad Wasim, Virat Kohli and Shadab Khan during ICC World Cup 2019 group match
"What we are aware of is that there will be no Pakistan players in the Asia XI. That is what the message is, so, there is no question of both countries coming together or picking one over the other. Sourav Ganguly will decide the five players who will be a part of the Asia XI," BCCI Joint Secretary Jayesh George said.
This statement has added more tensions to the already prevalent hostility between the two boards. Pakistan and India have not met each other in a bilateral series in almost seven years and their cricketing ties were further deteriorated in the wake of PCB chairman Ehsan Mani taking a dig at the Indian government.
"We have proved Pakistan is safe, if someone isn't coming then they should prove that it's unsafe. At this time, India is a far greater security risk than Pakistan,” Mani had said in response to Bangladesh’s hesitancy to send its team to Pakistan for the Test series.