Asian nations continue their isolation of Pakistan

According to sources, PCB Chairman Ijaz Butt and Sultan Rana, who represented Pakistan at the ACC executive council meeting, had offered to host the 2012 event at a neutral venue and suggested Dubai.

“But they met with stiff resistance from particularly the Indians who made it clear they were not willing to play at a venue which had in the past had suspicions raised about it,” one source said.

“The Indian contention was that in the past, cricket in the UAE had been linked to fixing and gambling and they could not accept it as a neutral venue,” the source added.

He said Sri Lanka and Bangladesh had also not backed Pakistan’s plea and eventually it was decided that Bangladesh would host the event in Mirpur in 2012.

“Apparently China was never seriously discussed as a possible venue for the Asia Cup as the PCB representatives insisted that it didn’t have the required international facilities to host such a major event so soon,” the source said. Pakistan had successfully hosted the Asia Cup in 2008 but since then security issues and an attack on the Sri Lankan team in Lahore has led to foreign teams refusing to play here and the PCB being forced to play its “home” matches at neutral venues.

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