Saturday October 16, 2021

Invisible politics

September 23, 2021

That a cricket team cancelled a whole tour just hours before the first game and another cancelled its series preemptively due to reasons unbeknown is bad for cricket. It is true that one cannot rule out the concerns pertaining to the security of any player. All stakeholders certainly should be cognisant of any threats and warnings. However, the fact that the ECB cancelled its tour for no concrete reasons makes the situation seems fishy.

Pakistan and India are always told by other cricketing nations to not involve their countries’ politics in the game, but the abrupt cancellations seem to have been taken on political grounds as well. One minister even went so far as to attribute these cancellations to the fact that the prime minister of Pakistan had said ‘absolutely not’ when asked if he would allow the US to establish its bases in Pakistan to deal with the Afghan situation. The minister claims that Pakistan is being punished. The perception that whatever happens in Afghanistan affects Pakistan has grown stronger with these events, but Afghanistan is a sovereign country and Pakistan cannot influence Afghanistan. Nevertheless, due to this event or rather the lack of event, Pakistan cricket has suffered a blow. The authorities should get to the bottom of this.

Anas A Khan

Edmonton, Canada