'This decision is made by our government' - PCB maintains unsettled stand on travelling to India for World Cup

When quirked about Pakistan's participation in the tournament, Sethi stated that it was not in the control of the board.

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Najam Sethi
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Pakistan cricket’s Najam Sethi. (Photo credit AAMIR QURESHI/AFP/Getty Images)

The suspense around Pakistan's participation in the upcoming ODI World Cup has thickened after PCB chair Najam Sethi's latest remarks. Sethi stated in his latest presser that Pakistan's participation in the World Cup, hosted by India, will be confirmed only after the government's approval.

The 50-over World Cup is just about four months away, but the BCCI is yet to come up with a schedule for the ICC mega event. Najam Sethi, Chairman of Management Committee of the Pakistan Cricket Board, added another twist to the saga with his latest comments.

When quirked about Pakistan's participation in the tournament, Sethi stated that it was not in the control of the board. He remarked that the team will only travel to the neighbouring country after the assent of the government. Furthermore, the venues will also need a nod of approval from the Pakistani government. Sethi told of the conditions in PCB's reply to ICC over the World Cup draft schedule.

"We have written to the ICC that we cannot give the approval or disapproval on travelling to India. This decision is made by our government, just like it is for India. Whether we will play in Ahmedabad or not is for later. When the time comes, the decision will be made on whether we will go or not. 

And then the government will tell us where we can play and where we cannot. We told them (ICC) that subject to these conditions, we can tell you at any stage that we will play or not, or where we can play," Sethi told the press when asked about Pakistan's participation.

Not sure which government will be in power at the time: Sethi

The PCB chief reminded everyone of Pakistan's participation in the 2016 T20 World Cup held in India. Sethi revealed that the Men in Green travelled to India only after then Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif's approval. He further elaborated by saying it was 'premature' to discuss the topic at the moment as the decision will only come after discussions with the Pakistani government. 

"You remember what happened in 2016. India had not been coming here but we went to India. We had discussions about whether to go or not. After those discussions, we spoke to Nawaz Sharif, who was the Prime Minister, and he said we should go.

It's premature to discuss anything. Not sure which government will be in power at the time. But it's a different matter that when there is a stable government when it's the right time, we will ask them. We have also informed the ICC the same thing, that if our government, looking at the security conditions, gives the approval then we will come. But if they don't then how can we come?" Sethi added.

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