The upcoming Asia Cup will be hosted jointly by Pakistan and Sri Lanka. Four games will take place in Pakistan, while nine games will be hosted by Sri Lanka, including the summit clash. The tournament will serve as a dress rehearsal ahead of the ODI World Cup that is scheduled to be held in October-November in India.
Bangladesh Cricket Board (BCB) cricket operation chairman Jalal Yunus has expressed his concern over the fact that the excessive travelling involved in the hybrid model of the Asia Cup could take its toll on the players. Bangladesh have been placed in Group B alongside Afghanistan and Sri Lanka. They will have to travel to Sri Lanka for their opening group-stage encounter against Dasun Shanaka’s men on August 31. Following this, they will have to travel to Pakistan to face Afghanistan in their second group game on September 3.
If Bangladesh manage to qualify for the Super 4s, they will play their first game in Pakistan, and from thereon, all their matches will be in Sri Lanka.
“Yes, we have to go to Lahore to play the first match. There are two matches in the first round, one in Sri Lanka and the other one is in Pakistan. We have to go as we can do nothing actually. After the 31st [August] the next match is on 3rd [September]. To make the journey comfortable the Asia Cup authorities [ACC] has decided to travel the teams in chartered flights. We will travel by chartered planes. This is the responsibility of the Asian Cricket Council. Of course, we would like to travel by quality airline, if that is a national airline or a chartered plane definitely that would be good for everyone,” Yunus was quoted as saying by Cricbuzz.
If you travel certainly there will be an impact: Jalal Yunus
Jalal Yunus, who replaced Akram Khan as the cricket operations chairman in 2021, said that travelling by air and reaching airports two hours before flights could put the players under mental stress. However, he also acknowledged that as other teams are okay with the schedule, Bangladesh will also have to prepare for the same.
“If you travel certainly there will be an impact which I feel because when you are travelling by air you will have to go two hours earlier and carry your luggage and preparing all these things is mentally stressful. Pakistan is far away from Sri Lanka. So there is nothing to do, since it is ACC’s decision, everyone is playing like this. We also have to accept it,” he ended.
BCB is expected to announce a preliminary squad soon as they will have a preparatory camp for the impending Asia Cup beginning July 31.