Asia Cup 2021 postponed to 2023 due to packed schedule

Had this year's tournament taken place, it would have been a T20 affair prior to the T20 World Cup in India later in October-November.

India has won the last two editions of the tournament.   -  AP

The 2021 edition of the Asia Cup will now be held in 2023 due to the lack of a window in a rejigged cricket calendar amid an evolving COVID-19 situation.

This year's continental tournament was moved from Pakistan to Sri Lanka but rising cases in the island nation had led to its cancellation and with all the big four Asian sides having packed schedules until the end of the year, finding a window 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.

"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.

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This year's tournament would have been a T20 affair before the T20 World Cup in India later in October-November.

There has been no Asia Cup since 2018, with the tournament planned for 2020 also getting postponed because of the pandemic.

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