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Can Pakistan be banned from 2019 World Cup? Sourav Ganguly reveals his view

The Supreme Court-appointed Committee of Administrators (CoA) wrote to the ICC asking for member countries to sever ties with countries from which terrorism emanates.

cricket Updated: Feb 26, 2019 08:45 IST
HT Correspondent
HT Correspondent
Hindustan Times, New Delhi
File image of Sourav Ganguly (left) with Virat Kohli.
File image of Sourav Ganguly (left) with Virat Kohli.(PTI)
         

The debate on whether the Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) should ask the International Cricket Council to ban Pakistan or whether the BCCI should just boycott Pakistan in the upcoming World Cup refuses to die down. In the wake of the Pulwama attack wherein 40 CRPF officials were killed by a suicide bomber, Indian fans have asked the national team and board to cut ties with arch-rivals Pakistan. The Supreme Court-appointed Committee of Administrators (CoA) wrote to the ICC asking for member countries to sever ties with countries from which terrorism emanates.

But former India skipper Sourav Ganguly believes that it will be very difficult to ban Pakistan.

“The government has already defined the terms as far as bilateral series between India and Pakistan is concerned. India and Pakistan don’t play bilateral series... the last bilateral series was played in 2006. However, I doubt the prospects of banning Pakistan from World Cup or international cricket. It is a big thing,” Ganguly told IndiaTV.

“The ICC is a separate institution, World Cup is a separate institution and I feel it is very difficult to implement this here. This is my personal view that banning Pakistan from World Cup or international cricket won’t be possible. World Cup is still far away and we will see what happens then. But in my opinion, it will be very difficult for India or the Indian government to go to ICC and ask for a ban on Pakistan from World Cup or international cricket. There’s less than even one per cent chance of this happening,” he added.

Ganguly said that the BCCI could take a call for Indian cricket, but to expect the ICC to act on the plea of the board and ban Pakistan was a little difficult. He went on to point how the International Olympic Committee reacted to India denying visas to Pakistan shooters for the ISSF World Cup in the Capital.

“You can boycott a particular country in bilateral series but it won’t be easy do the same in World Cup or international cricket. I can’t say on whether India will be able to influence the ICC to ban Pakistan from World Cup as it’s a very difficult thing to do. You just saw how the International Olympic Committee reacted when India denied visas to Pakistani shooters (participating in the ISSF World Cup in Delhi). So, it’s not an easy task,” Ganguly said.

First Published: Feb 25, 2019 16:01 IST

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