“Have to make sure we’re not isolated,” new PCB chief softens stand on 2023 World Cup participation

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Newly appointed Pakistan Cricket Board (PCB) chairman, Najam Sethi, backtracks from Ramiz Raja’s comments on withdrawing from the 2023 World Cup in India.

Former PCB chairman Ramiz Raja was fired just a year after taking office. The issues over team selection, and below average performance from the senior team led to Raja’s ouster. Just before Ramiz Raja was fired, he issued a strong statement regarding Pakistan’s participation in the 2023 World Cup in India wherein he threatened to pull out of the tournament.

The war of words between the two nations began when reports emerged that the 2023 Asia Cup could be moved out of Pakistan due to security reasons. This enraged the former PCB chairman, who, in retaliation, threatened to pull out of the 2023 ODI World Cup. He said that if India refuses to travel to Pakistan and forces the tournament at a neutral venue, Pakistan would not take part in the ICC event to be held in India.

“We will seek the government’s advice,” PCB Chairman Najam Sethi

However, the new PCB committee has taken a soft stand on the whole issue. Najam Sethi, while addressing the media, said that no decision will be made in haste. Proper consultation with the government of Pakistan and the Asia Cricket Council (ACC) will take place.

“As far as Asia Cup is concerned, I will go to ACC and see what the situation is; we’ll take a decision which is in the better interest of the game,” 

“We will obey whatever the government would suggest to us. We will seek the government’s advice when the time arrives. Similar to the last time I was the chairman,”

Furthermore, Sethi went on to say that PCB will not take any steps that will isolate Pakistan cricket. They want to stay in the circuit and play with big nations.

“We have to see what other board’s position is. We have to play cricket with everyone, we will not take any step which can cause any isolation.”

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