Pakistan condemns India's politicization of cricket on threatening players to join KPL

ISLAMABAD (Dunya News) - Pakistan on Saturday strongly condemned India’s politicization of cricket by preventing international players to participate in the Kashmir Premier League (KPL).

Foreign Office Spokesperson Zahid Hafeez Chaudhri said “India’s politicization of cricket cannot be condemned enough”.

He termed as “unfortunate and regrettable” the reports where Kashmiri players were denied to share the dressing room with renowned cricket players.

“Depriving young Kashmiri players of the opportunity to share dressing room with big names in cricket is unfortunate and regrettable,” he wrote in a tweet. 

The reaction came as former South Africa batsman Herschelle Gibbs accused the Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) of “trying to prevent” him from participating in KPL and bringing their “political agenda with Pakistan into the equation”.

“Completely unnecessary of the BCCI to bring their political agenda with Pakistan into the equation and trying to prevent me playing in the KPL,” he said. “[They are] also threatening me saying they won’t allow me entry into India for any cricket related work. Ludicrous.”

Gibbs, who is a part of KPL franchise Overseas Warriors, in a tweet said the BCCI had also threatened of denying him entry in India if he participates in the league.

Minister for Information and Broadcasting Chaudhry Fawad Hussain also condemned Modi government for pressurizing Gibbs not to participate in Kashmir League.

In a tweet, Fawad Hussain said that this was not the first time that Modi government of India had used cricket for its dirty politics.

He said that the pressure on South African cricketer Herschelle Gibbs not to participate in the Kashmir League was a continuation of this old practice.

On the other hand, while talking to media in Islamabad, Kashmir Committee Chairman Shehryar Afridi said that India is afraid of the success of Kashmir Premier League, 6 teams are participating in KPL, the event was highly appreciated at the international level.

He said that it was reprehensible to threat foreign players for participating in KPL.