What’s the story?
Sri Lanka gained their independence from colonial rule in 1948 and will celebrate their 70th year of independence in 2018. To celebrate it through sport, the Sri Lankan Cricket board will organize a 4-nation tournament with India, Pakistan and South Africa being the visitors.
"We are very very keen to play our Independence cup in Sri Lanka next year which India has agreed to be part of it," Sri Lankan Cricket President Thilanga Sumathipala confirmed.
In case you didn’t know...
2017 promises to a treat for Indian cricket fans as the team are set to be engaged with a number of appointments. The first few months of the year will see India complete their series with England, take part in a one-off Test against Bangladesh and host Australia for a 4-match Test series.
The Indian Premier League will return for its 10th season in April before the team will travel to England to defend their Champions Trophy crown.
The rest of the year is packed as well with tours to the Caribbean, Sri Lanka and South Africa.
The heart of the matter
All 4 cricket boards involved – India, Pakistan, South Africa and Sri Lanka have tightly packed schedules in the next 18 months. SLC President Sumathipala acknowledged that there might be scheduling issues, but was confident that it would get resolved before the series.
"The Indians are willing to go to South Africa in the period where we are scheduled to tour, so we will discuss with India and South Africa during the next month's ICC meeting in Dubai regarding our return tour, Independence Cup and then we all (Sri Lanka, India, South Africa and Pakistan) will accommodate each other," he added.
This will be the first time that India and Pakistan will face each other in any event apart from ICC’s major competitions since 2012/2013.
The focus will be on finding an appropriate window to pencil in the tournament. To enhance the ties between the two cricketing boards, Sri Lanka might visit India for a short tour to celebrate India’s 70th Independence day later this year.
We cannot wait for this tournament to get confirmed with 4 major teams set to take part. It will be fascinating to see 4 heavyweights go hammer and tongs at each other. At this juncture, India and South Africa appear to be the stronger of the four, but all could change with this year’s Champions TrophyPublished 23 Jan 2017, 11:28 IST