The fate of the bilateral series between Pakistan and India, to be played in Sri Lanka, now lies in the hands of the governments of both countries. Both the BCCI and PCB confirmed that they had written to their governments asking for clearance for the tour, which is likely to feature five limited-overs games – three ODIs and two T20s. This is the first official confirmation offered by the BCCI about the decision taken to play the bilateral series in Sri Lanka.
Anurag Thakur, the BCCI secretary, said he had written to the Indian Foreign Ministry on Tuesday. “I have written a letter to the Foreign Ministry seeking clearance to play with Pakistan in Sri Lanka,” Thakur told PTI. “According to the agreement of India and Pakistan, both teams were supposed to play in the UAE or at any other neutral venue if the conditions in Pakistan were not suitable. It is up to Pakistan as to where they want to play. After discussions with the BCCI and PCB, both countries have decided to play in Sri Lanka.”
The decision to play the series in Sri Lanka was taken at the meeting between BCCI president Shashank Manohar and PCB chairman Shaharyar Khan in Dubai on Sunday. The PCB, though, did not mention Sri Lanka as the venue in a media release issued today, saying the final decision would be announced publicly by ECB president Giles Clarke, who was present as a facilitator during the Dubai meeting between the two boards.
“There has been much speculative reportage on the PCB-BCCI discussions in Dubai under the facilitation of Mr Giles Clarke. The facts are as follows: a) PCB has informed the government of the talks in Dubai that were regarded as fruitful. The PCB has not asked for an NOC from government for it is the government’s prerogative to decide on the issue. b) Similarly, BCCI is also seeking its government’s views on these matters. c) No request has been received from BCCI regarding the sharing of revenues. d) In due course, Mr Giles Clarke would brief the media of developments,” the release said.
Both sides have been tightlipped after the meeting, divulging few specific details including the possible dates for the series. However officials who have been privy to details of the Dubai meeting indicated they the series could be played between December 15 and the first week of January. India then travel to Australia to play a limited-overs series, which begins on January 12.