The Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) has shared the draft schedule for the upcoming ICC Men’s Cricket ODI World Cup, slated to take place in India. According to the preliminary schedule, India will kick off their campaign against Australia in Chennai on Oct 8. The much-anticipated clash against arch-rivals Pakistan is scheduled for a week later in Ahmedabad. The draft schedule has been shared with participating countries for feedback before the final schedule is released next week.
“The BCCI shared the draft schedule with the ICC, which then sent it to the participating countries for feedback before a final schedule is put out early next week,” ESPNCricinfo reported on Monday.
The tournament is set to commence on Oct 5 with a clash between reigning champions England and last edition’s runner-up, New Zealand, in Ahmedabad. The same venue will also host the final on Nov 19. The venues for the semifinals, scheduled for November 15 and 16, are yet to be decided.
As hosts, India will play league phase matches across nine cities, including Kolkata, Mumbai, New Delhi, and Bengaluru. Apart from the opening match against Australia, India’s encounter against Pakistan on Oct 15 in Ahmedabad promises to be a highly anticipated contest. The Indian team will also face Afghanistan, Bangladesh, England, and South Africa, among others, during the group stage.
Pakistan’s league matches will be played across five cities. They are slated to meet the two teams progressing from the Qualifiers on October 6 and 12 in Hyderabad. Key fixtures for Pakistan include matches against Australia in Bengaluru on Oct 20, Afghanistan and South Africa in Chennai on October 23 and 27, respectively, and a clash against Bangladesh in Kolkata on Oct 31.
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Australia, the defending champions, have intriguing matches lined up against Trans-Tasman rivals New Zealand in Dharamsala on Oct 29 and against England in Ahmedabad on Nov 4. These matches are expected to draw significant attention from cricket fans worldwide.
With just over four months remaining until the tournament begins, there has been an unusual delay in releasing the schedule. In previous editions of the tournament in 2015 and 2019, the schedule was finalized more than a year in advance.
India’s tentative schedule:
India vs. Australia, Oct 8, Chennai
India vs. Afghanistan, Oct 11, Delhi
India vs. Pakistan, Oct 15, Ahmedabad
India vs. Bangladesh, Oct 19, Pune
India vs. New Zealand, Oct 22, Dharamsala
India vs. England, Oct 29, Lucknow
India vs. Qualifier, Nov 2, Mumbai
India vs. South Africa, Nov 5, Kolkata
India vs. Qualifier, Nov 11, Bengaluru.