Ravi Shastri, Asia Cup 2023
Ravi Shastri. Picture Credit: Getty

Last Update on: September 11th, 2023 at 03:39 pm

The Asian Cricket Council (ACC) is facing the heat from several quarters for picking Sri Lanka as the venue for the ongoing Asia Cup 2023. Sri Lanka witnesses heavy rain during this time of the year and the ongoing year has not been an exception either.

Pakistan were initially given the hosting rights for the tournament. However, India refused to travel to Pakistan due to the poor bilateral relations between the two countries. The Pakistan Cricket Board (PCB) then came up with a hybrid model wherein they proposed a neutral venue for India’s games. While PCB proposed UAE as the neutral venue, Sri Lanka was finalized as the one for the ongoing competition.

As a result, Pakistan were given the hosting rights for 4 games while Sri Lanka got it for 9 matches. The move, however, has backfired so far as rain continues to play spoilsport. The mega clash between India and Pakistan during the group stage was washed out and the Super 4 game between the two nations is in danger of suffering the same fate too.

The arch-rivals locked horns in the third Super 4 game of Asia Cup 2023 on Sunday (September 10). However, only 24.1 overs were possible before heavy rain brought a premature end. Fortunately, there is a reserve day in place but the weather forecast is not promising.

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Asia Cup 2023: Dubai is so hot – Ravi Shastri

As ACC continues to face the heat for picking Sri Lanka as the venue, former India head coach Ravi Shastri has explained why UAE was not picked. Shastri stated that the players would have suffered a lot if the tournament had been played in red-hot UAE.

“If you actually see at this moment in time, there is rain everywhere. You know, there was talk about that it could have been played in Dubai. Dubai is so hot… for a 50-over game, these players would have been finished. It’s unforeseen circumstances, it’s a calamity that can happen naturally. You look at Bangladesh, northern India, Mumbai, coastline of India… there is rain everywhere,” Ravi Shastri said on the Cricket Live Show on Star Sports.

Meanwhile, a recent report suggests that the final of Asia Cup 2023 is likely to be shifted from Colombo to Kandy if rain continues to play spoilsport. The ACC is likely to take the decision after the India vs Pakistan match.