ICC Champions Trophy 2025

Should Team India Play the ICC Champions Trophy 2025 in Pakistan?

With Team India winning the 2024 ICC World T20 Championship, it has ended the jinx for Team India of not winning an ICC event for a long time even after reaching the Semis or Finals in most ICC Tournament.

Under the captaincy of Rohit Sharma, Team India narrowly missed winning the 50-over ODI World Cup in the finals against Australia. Learning from their final’s loss, the team ensured that India did not falter in the finals and beat Proteas, to become the 2024 T20 World Champion.

With an extremely potent team, the Next mission for Team India will be to lift the next ICC tournament, the Champions Trophy 2025.

Champions Trophy 2025 will be hosted by Pakistan which has caused a major roadblock for team India.

Will India go to Pakistan to play in the ICC event?

For a few years now, India has severed all cricketing ties with Pakistan due to cross-border terrorism. The only exception to this is playing against their arch-rival in ICC events.

Though not an ICC event, during the last Asia Cup tournament, India did not travel to Pakistan and Sri Lanka had to co-host the tournament to accommodate India’s request to play at a neutral venue.

While there was a huge hue and cry from Pakistan, India played all their matches in Sri Lanka and the Semifinals and Finals were also held in the Island nation. India was the eventual winner.


Can India flex its muscles in an ICC Event?

While the Asia Cup was not an ICC event, the Champions Trophy is one. So, it will be difficult for India to flex their muscle to play at a neutral venue. India may have to adhere to ICC rules, and seeing India’s stand on this event will be interesting.

The upcoming ICC event in 2025, The Champions Trophy is a tournament as big as the World Cup and India can ill afford to not be a part.

With their 2 most famous sons, Rohit Sharma and Virat Kohli possibly playing their last ODI format tournament, BCCI will want a perfect farewell for the two stalwarts and hope for an India win in this tournament.

Why India should not travel to Pakistan for Champions Trophy 2025

But the ICC event is in Pakistan!!


Why India should not travel to Pakistan for Champions Trophy 2025

The Current situation in Pakistan

Pakistan has been hit with Political and Financial crises for some time now and cricket is the only sport in Pakistan that binds the people of Pakistan together.

With a new government in place and a new Pakistan Cricket Board, holding the Champions Trophy in Pakistan will be a matter of prestige and to score huge Political brownie points in Pakistan’s internal politics.

Due to this reason, major news channels and Youtubers in Pakistan have started news debates and programs on the Champions Trophy to build up hype around the tournament.

The hype being created by the news outlets also is to see if India or BCCI reacts to the constant chit-chat on social media even though the tournament is 7-8 months.

Why India should not travel to Pakistan for Champions Trophy 2025

The Power of BCCI

India is the powerhouse of cricket. Any team playing against Team India gets the much-needed exposure to a wider audience and the revenue earned is exponentially higher.

India’s involvement in a major tournament ensures broadcasting revenue, advertisement, sponsorship, and most importantly the viewing audience.

This was evident when all the India match fixtures in the recently concluded T20 World Cup in the Caribbean islands were scheduled at 8.00 pm IST making it a Day game to cater to a wider audience and to suit the broadcaster’s interest.

While Pakistan media can give a false impression that they can run the tournament without India’s participation, Pakistan and ICC know very well that a Champions Trophy without Team India is a recipe for a financial disaster.


 Why should India not go to Pakistan?

  • While Pakistan is mostly a cricket-loving nation, the infrastructure and facilities available are highly inadequate.
  • All matches will be played in 3-4 stadiums leading to tired pitches.

All matches currently scheduled for Team India is to be played in Lahore making the Indian team, sitting ducks if there is an imminent terror attack on the players. This happened earlier with the touring team Sri Lanka some years back.

  • Indian players become high-value targets for a potential terrorist attack. Attack, kidnap or worse situations can arise.

Like in the Munich Olympics, the Indian team can be targeted like the Israeli players who were killed brutally by terrorists.

Why India should not travel to Pakistan for Champions Trophy 2025

  • While there can be an argument against India’s reluctance when other teams are participating, it should also be understood that, unlike other countries, India has been on the receiving side of Pakistan-sponsored terrorismin the past.

The reluctance of other teams to play in Pakistan

  • England, Australia, and New Zealand have in the past cancelled tours to Pakistan or left Pakistan in between an ongoing series.
  • There is a current conflict going on in the borders of Pakistan and Afghanistan.
  • There is a possibility of the Afghanistan team also refusing participation as there is a border standoff between the two countries.

Why India should not travel to Pakistan for Champions Trophy 2025

  • There are regular terror attacks currently in Pakistan and all the teams are keeping a close eye on the situation. It would not be a surprise if the tournament comes to a premature end if there is a terror attack during the tournament.

The only solution is a Hybrid Model

The decision of India’s participation is not in the hands of the BCCI and solely rests in the hands of the Government of India. If there is no clearance from the Government, India will not travel to Pakistan and be ready to accept sanctions or fines levied by the ICC.

Why India should not travel to Pakistan for Champions Trophy 2025

ICC will try to play mediator to reach a middle ground for both the countries and If ICC wants India to participate in the tournament, the only solution is a Hybrid Model.

Neutral venues like UAE or Sri Lanka as was the case in the previously held Asia Cup may be an option.

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