The Asia Cup 2021 will not take place this year due to Covid-19 and a packed international schedule. The continental multinational event, which were to be played on the T20 format before the ICC World Cup, has now been deferred to 2023.
The 2021 edition of the Asia Cup will now be held in 2023. Lack of a window in the rejigged cricket calendar that is constantly subject to change amid an evolving COVID-19 pandemic has caused the long delay.
The continental tournament this year was moved from Pakistan to Sri Lanka but rising cases in the Emerald Island had led to its cancellation. A rescheduling this year was not possible as all the big four Asian sides – India, Pakistan, Bangladesh and Sri Lanka, are having packed schedules until the end of the year. Finding a window for the tournament this year would have been extremely difficult.
The Asian Cricket Council (ACC) issued a statement in this regard.
“The Board has accordingly considered the matter very carefully and determined that the only way ahead would be to postpone the event,” reads the statement.
“It would therefore only be feasible for this edition of the tournament to be held in 2023 as there is already an Asia Cup in 2022. Dates for the same will be confirmed in due course.
“The ACC Executive Board, in face of the risks and restrictions posed by the COVID-19 pandemic, had made the difficult decision to postpone the Asia Cup 2020 to 2021. Since then, the ACC has been working with its participants and stakeholders to try and ensure that the event is held in the year.
“However, on account of a packed FTP, it has been concluded that there is no practical window in the year when all the teams would be available to participate,” the ACC said in its statement.
The tournament in 2020 was shifted to June this year. There has been no Asia Cup since 2018, with the tournament planned for 2020 also getting postponed because of the pandemic.