The Colombo-based Asian Cricket Council on Thursday postponed the Asia Cup, scheduled to be held in September, 2020 whereas the Pakistan Cricket Board (PCB) has also exchanged hosting rights for the tournament with Sri Lanka.
“The Executive Board of the ACC has met on multiple occasions to evaluate the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic on the Asia Cup tournament scheduled in September 2020,” the council said in a press release issued on the same day.
Meanwhile, commenting on the hosting rights swap, the council said “it may also be noted that the hosts for the Asia Cup 2020, Pakistan Cricket Board (PCB), has exchanged hosting rights for the tournament with Sri Lanka Cricket (SLC).
“Through this arrangement, the SLC will now host the rescheduled Asia Cup expected in June 2021 while the PCB will host the Asia Cup 2022.”
The council said that “from the onset, the Board was keen on organising the tournament as per the original schedule. However, travel restrictions, country-specific quarantine requirements, fundamental health risks and social distancing mandates have posed substantial challenges to the holding of the Asia Cup.
“Above all, the risks related to health and safety of participating players, support staff, commercial partners, fans and the cricketing community were deemed to be significant.”
“Accordingly, the board, after careful consideration of all the above factors, has determined that the Asia Cup 2020 be postponed”, it said.
“Conducting the event in a responsible manner remains the priority of the ACC and the board is hopeful that the tournament will be held in 2021. The ACC is currently working towards securing June 2021 as a suitable window for the same.”
Pakistan was granted the rights to host the 2020 edition of the tournament in the country but the Indian cricket board had said it would not travel to the country given the tense political situation between the two neighbours.
India is the defending champion of the Asia Cup after it beat Sri Lanka in the last episode held back in 2018.