According to news reports
, BCCI president Anurag Thakur will make an unprecedented request to the ICC in the coming days by asking them to not place India and Pakistan in the same Group in the upcoming Champions Trophy.
With this BCCI hopes to stop India and Pakistan from clashing against each other unless they both qualify for the final or semi-finals of an event.
India and Pakistan have had no bilateral series since 2012 and have only faced each other in multi-nation tournaments like the World Cup, World T20 series or The Champions Trophy.
“I will be suggesting to the ICC that looking at the current situation between both countries it is not advisable to have India and Pakistan in one group of Champions Trophy as there could be situation like we had in India during India vs Pakistan T20 World game in Dharamshala where we had to shift the game at the last moment.”
With bilateral political relations between India and Pakistan deteriorating, BCCI hopes to even avoid playing against Pakistan during any multi-nation tournaments.
The reports also say that while BCCI would soon be taking their request to ICC, the issue has already been discussed on the sidelines of the Special General Meeting that took place in Mumbai recently.
BCCI is especially looking at the heightened tensions between India and Pakistan since the Uri terror attack and the subsequent LoC ‘surgical strikes’ by the Indian Army to make this request.
BCCI President Anurag Thakur, who is also a BJP MP has said that this step would be taken “in view of the public sentiment in the country.”
“The matter is of concern. We felt that it will be better if we inform ICC nine months in advance so that ICC should not face any kind of problem in future. I will be writing a letter also to ICC on this soon.”
The ICC though has said that they till now have not received any request from BCCI in this regard. Further, if any such request comes in the future, the ICC board will look into it.
It must be noted that given the high interest and commercial value of the clash, the ICC generally puts the two rival teams in the same group in multi-nation tournaments to attract more spectators.