Karachi [Pakistan], Dec 19 (ANI): Former Pakistan Cricket Board (PCB) chairman Shaharyar Khan has said he could not see bilateral series against India happening anytime soon as the political turmoil between the two countries continues.
The 83-year-old stressed that though the Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) was not against the series, they require its government's approval to play against Pakistan anywhere outside International Cricket Council (ICC) tournaments.
While the BCCI has repeatedly snubbed Pakistan's request for resumption of ties, the PCB wants its Indian counterpart to honour its commitment under the MoU signed, which is subjected to clearance from the Government of India.
And Shaharyar admitted that absence of bilateral series between India and Pakistan is solely because of political tensions and that it has nothing to do with the cricketing boards of the two arch-rivals.
"The real reason behind the absence of India and Pakistan bilateral series is political and has nothing to do with either the PCB or the BCCI. In the current political climate, I really do not see any way in the near future that both teams will be able to play each other. The fact of the matter is that we have always been willing to play India anywhere, but it's the government of India who have prevented the BCCI from playing against us and there is not much we can do about that," Pakpassion.net quoted Shaharyar, as saying.
"I know for a fact that BCCI tried to convince their government and explained to them that there would be a loss of revenue for both India and Pakistan. However, the Government of India has stuck by its stand that unless the political climate improves; there can be no resumption of cricketing relations between both countries. They will simply not allow it," he added.
"We will continue to play India in ICC tournaments as we did in the Champions Trophy and so on, but no Test or limited overs series will be played between the two countries in the foreseeable future," he added.
Despite not playing a full-fledged bilateral series against Pakistan since the 2008 terror attacks in Mumbai, the arch-rivals have played each other a number of times in the ICC events, with the most recent coming at the 2017 ICC Champions Trophy. Although, Pakistan did tour India for a short series in December, 2012.
Pakistan was expected to generate bulk of revenue in these eight years by hosting India, but since BCCI denied playing the series in wake of tensions between the two countries, the PCB suffered huge financial losses due to it.
Recently, the Najam Sethi-led board said that they would only approve the new Future Tours Programme (FTP), proposed by the International Cricket Council (ICC), after the dispute with India over resumption of bilateral series is resolved.(ANI)