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India ‘foolish’ & ‘childish’ if they forfeit Pakistan match – Javed Miandad

by Wisden Staff 4 minute read

Former Pakistan captain Javed Miandad has said the BCCI would be “foolish” and “childish” if it decides to forfeit India’s game against Pakistan at the 2019 World Cup.

The governing body issued a press release on February 22 calling for “the cricketing community to sever ties with countries from which terrorism emanates” in response to a terrorist attack on February 14 in Pulwama, in the Jammu and Kashmir region of India, that killed 40 members of India’s Central Reserve Police Force.

Miandad said there was “no chance” that the ICC would accept the BCCI’s decision if it decide to boycott the fixture “as its constitution allows members the right to participate in its events”.

“We should not bother with India’s cowardly acts, instead we must focus on improving ourselves,” Miandad said.

Former Indian cricketers Sourav Ganguly and Harbhajan Singh, along with current player Yuzvendra Chahal, have called for a complete boycott of all sporting events against Pakistan. The rivals’ World Cup group match is due to be played at Old Trafford on June 16.

Miandad dismissed Ganguly’s call as a “publicity stunt [designed] to gain the attention of his country mates” and fuel for the former Indian captain’s own political ambitions.

Sachin Tendulkar has voiced some disagreement though. In a statement to the Press Trust of India, Tendulkar said he would “hate” to forfeit the game.

“India has always come up trumps against Pakistan in the World Cup,” he said. “Time to beat them once again. I would personally hate to give them two points and help them in the tournament.

“Having said that, for me India always comes first, so whatever my country decides, I will back that decision with all my heart.”

Sunil Gavaskar echoed Tendulkar’s sentiments, stating the team would be “conceding two points” if they forfeited the match, rather than making sure their rivals “don’t advance in the competition”.

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