The International Cricket Council (ICC) has granted Pakistan the right to host the Champions Trophy 2025, which is scheduled to take place in February or March. However, a formal hosting agreement has not yet been finalised.
This issue was discussed during the most recent ICC meetings in India. Authorities from PCB are upbeat about the agreement’s impending signature. Pakistan has made it plain that the ICC should not make judgements on its own if a nation claims security concerns as a reason not to send a squad. Rather, a thorough evaluation should be carried out in coordination with a separate security organisation.
All teams have played in Pakistan recently without any security problems, with the exception of India. Thus, unless there is a legitimate security risk that is confirmed by an impartial security body, all matches are to be played in Pakistan.
According to sources, the Indian government is unlikely to let BCCI to send an Indian squad to Pakistan given the current situation. The PCB expects a government-level solution and recognises the political aspect of this issue. Alternative options, such moving India’s matches to neutral locations and guaranteeing full compensation for monetary losses through ICC consultation, are being considered in case India decides not to send its squad. In addition, the previous PCB management committee had objected based on ICC papers and had sought legal counsel. ICC CEO Geoff Allardice and Chairman Greg Barclay visited Pakistan in May, but they were unable to resolve this issue. The current administration is looking for certainty, and contracts might be signed as early as next month, subject to certain financial and other issues being resolved.
Notably, PCB used a hybrid format to effectively organise the 2023 Asia Cup in Sri Lanka, with just four matches taking place there. For the Champions Trophy, a similar strategy might be used if the Indian team decides to withdraw, but the costs would go up significantly.