Rajiv Gandhi International Stadium, Hyderabad. (Photo Source: BCCI)
The upcoming warm-up match between New Zealand and Pakistan, scheduled for September 29th as part of the ICC Men’s Cricket World Cup 2023 preparations, will be played behind closed doors. Local security agencies have advised this decision due to the coinciding festivals on the same day, which are expected to draw large crowds around the city. Besides, in the latest development, The Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) informed on their website that cricket enthusiasts who had purchased tickets for the game need not worry, as they will receive a full refund for their purchases.
Meanwhile, Pakistan and Afghanistan cricket teams have successfully obtained their visas for travel to India for the marquee event. The Pakistani players and support staff are set to receive their visas on Tuesday, facilitating their participation in the quadrennial tournament. The Pakistan cricket team is scheduled to arrive in Hyderabad via Dubai, on Wednesday, September 27, two days ahead of their first warm-up match against New Zealand on September 29.
Sources indicate that Pakistan had applied for their Indian visa on September 19, with the standard processing time taking around five days for approval. Due to this timeline, Pakistan had to abandon its initial plans for a team-bonding camp in Dubai and proceed directly to India.
Ahead of the ODI World Cup 2023, Pakistan is slated to play two warm-up matches, facing New Zealand in Hyderabad and taking on Australia on October 3 at the same venue. Their first official World Cup match is against the Netherlands on October 6. The much-anticipated Pakistan-India clash is scheduled for October 14, at the Narendra Modi Stadium, in Ahmedabad. This stadium will also host the World Cup opener between England and New Zealand on October 5, setting the stage for an exciting tournament.
Pakistan‘s World Cup journey will span five venues, including Hyderabad, Chennai, Kolkata, and Bengaluru, each hosting two matches. The grand event will culminate with a high-voltage encounter in Ahmedabad. While Pakistan entered the Asia Cup as the No. 1-ranked ODI team, they faced an unexpected exit in the Super 4s stage following defeats to India and Sri Lanka. The cricketing world now eagerly awaits their performance in the ICC Men’s Cricket World Cup 2023, hoping for a revival of their championship form.
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