The original schedule for the ICC ODI World Cup 2023 has the highly-anticipated India vs Pakistan clash scheduled for October 15 in Ahmedabad. However, the fixture is reportedly likely to be rescheduled as the date also marks the beginning of the Navaratri festival in the state. Considering the extent to which the Navaratri is celebrated in Ahmedabad and the whole of Gujarat, the security agencies said to have expressed concerns over logistical issues. The Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI), hence, is reportedly looking to restructure the itinerary despite the fact that the tickets for the high-profile match have already been sold out.
“We are mulling the options that we have and a decision will be taken soon. We have been told by the security agencies that a high-profile game like India vs Pakistan, for which thousands of travelling fans are expected to reach Ahmedabad, should be avoided since they will be stretched because of Navratri,” a top BCCI official told The Indian Express on the condition of anonymity.
As per a PTI report, the match is expected to be preponed by a day, and held on October 14 instead.
The news agency also reported that the game will not move out of the Narendra Modi Stadium but the fans will still need to change their travel plans.
With the hotel fares going through the roof, it was reported earlier this month that the passionate fans who will be flying in from all around the world have resorted to booking hospital beds in the city.
India play their opening World Cup game against Australia in Chennai on October 8 while Pakistan’s first two games have been scheduled in Hyderabad on October 6 and October 12.
Advancing the Indo-Pak game by a day might also impact the Babar Azam-led side, which will get a day less to prepare for the high-profile clash.
The report also added that the BCCI secretary Jay Shah has written to associations hosting World Cup matches, asking them to attend a meeting in New Delhi on July 27. During the meeting, the board will discuss the concerns with other boards and take a call on when and where the Indo-Pak match would be taking place.
“I feel it will be in the best interest of all concerned that we meet again to exchange notes and take stock of any issue which needs discussion and decision. Accordingly, you are hereby requested to attend a meeting of the World Cup hosting associations,” the letter reportedly read.
Mass cancellations of hotel and flight bookings could be in place if the date for the match does get changed.
With PTI inputs
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