"We'd love to play a role": Cricket Australia CEO desires to host India-Pakistan bilateral series

"We'd love to play a role": Cricket Australia CEO desires to host India-Pakistan bilateral series
Image source: ICC

Melbourne, Australia: Cricket Australia (CA) has expressed the desire to host a bilateral series between India and Pakistan if the Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) and Pakistan Cricket Board (PCB) agree to clash in a bilateral contest in future for the first time in 12 years.

India and Pakistan Cricket Team are set to visit Australia for their respective series in November. Where on one side India will travel to play a five-match Test series starting on November 22 at Perth and on the other hand Pakistan's side will play a three-match ODI and T20I series against the Men in Yellow.

India and Australia last played a bilateral series in 2012-13 and since then both teams have locked horns against each other either in the Asia Cup or in the ICC events.

Following the mega success of the 2022 T20 World Cup match between India and Pakistan at the Melbourne Cricket Ground (MCG), where 90,293 fans witnessed a last-ball thriller which saw Virat Kohli play an iconic knock of 82*, CA, the Melbourne Cricket Club (MCG operators), and the Victorian government have now expressed interest in two teams at the MCG, which could be a great move for them financially.

Cricket Australia (CA) CEO Nick Hockley opined that they would be happy to host the bilateral series between India and Pakistan at the iconic MCG if they get an opportunity.

"I think anyone that was here for the India-Pakistan game at the MCG, it will go down as one of the most memorable occasions, not just sporting occasions, that I've ever been to. So people want to see that contest. We would love to host that if the opportunity arose. If we can play a role, we'd love to play a role," Hockley stated as quoted by ESPNcricinfo.

"We're so excited to host Pakistan. We're so excited to host India. If we can help, that's great. But I think in many ways, that's a bilateral series. It's really for others to make that happen," the CA CEO added.

CA's head of scheduling, Peter Roach, admitted on Tuesday that Australia would also be interested in hosting a tri-series, which last occurred between India and Pakistan during the 1999-2000 season, rather than just a neutral bilateral series, but he noted that there was not sufficient space in the current Future Tours Programme (FTP).

"We haven't got a tri-series in the FTP. Going forward we're always interested in opportunities for matches and contests that will engage our fans. It's fair to say every country in the world would love to see India and Pakistan compete in their country," Roach asserted.

"We're on record as saying we're one of those countries that has asked the question. There's no room in the schedules to do that at the moment. We'll keep talking to them in any other opportunities that arise, but in this specific example there are not going to be any changes to the schedule," he concluded.