ICC doesn't have the mandate or ability to influence India-Pakistan ties: Greg Barclay

ICC doesn’t have the mandate or ability to influence India-Pakistan ties: Greg Barclay

Greg Barclay was recently elected as new ICC Chairman.

India vs Pakistan (Photo by Philip Brown/Getty Images)

One of the biggest challenges for the International Cricket Council (ICC) over the past one decade has been to try and ensure that India and Pakistan resume their bilateral ties. But so far, the apex body of the game has failed to do so. And ICC’s recently-appointed chairman Greg Barclay has made it clear that there is not much they can do about the bilateral ties between the two neighbours.

Barclays admitted that some of the factors involved in the suspension of bilateral ties between India and Pakistan are beyond cricket. He, however, insisted that the ICC will be looking to do its best to ensure cricketing relations resume between the two countries. The bilateral relation between India and Pakistan has been going from bad to worse in the last few years.

They have not played a full bilateral Test series since 2007 when Pakistan visited India. Five years later, some hopes were raised when India invited Pakistan for a short-limited overs tour. However, it did not take long for those slim hopes to vanish as the bilateral relations further deteriorated. Pakistan and India have not played against each other in a bilateral series since 2012/13 season.

I would love for India and Pakistan ties to continue

While the cricketing fraternity must have high hopes from Greg Barclay regarding the India-Pakistan ties, he has admitted that there is not much he could do. The former New Zealand Cricket (NZC) official pointed out that geo-political factors are involved in the suspension of ties and thus the ICC do not have the mandate to influence the ties.

“I would love nothing more than for India and Pakistan to be able to continue cricketing relations as they were previously. I’m also enough of a realist to understand that there are geo-political issues at play here. I think all we can do at the ICC is to continue to help and support in any way that we can to bring about outcomes that would see India and Pakistan in a position where they can play cricket regularly against each other and in their home territories,” Greg Barclay was quoted as saying by MyKhel.

“Beyond that, I do not think I have the mandate or ability to influence the outcomes more than that. That is really being done at a level way beyond where we would be operating. Rest assured that from the cricketing point of view, we would love to get those countries back together again on a regular basis. The ICC will do whatever it can to help facilitate and support an outcome that might see that happen,” he added.

At present, India and Pakistan only play against each other in ICC global events or the Asia Cup. The arch-rivals last played in the 2019 World Cup where India thrashed Pakistan convincingly. If everything goes according to plan, they are likely to cross paths again next year in the Asia Cup.