UAE looking forward to hosting Asia Cup
After India’s refusal to host the Asia Cup due to the intricacies of providing Pakistan players with Indian visa, the onus to host the tournament was thrown on the United Arab Emirates.
The country isn’t stranger to hosting the grandest tournament of Asia as they were the home team in the year 1995. They have once again been bestowed with the opportunity and they are looking forward to it.
The chairman of Emirates Cricket Board couldn’t hide his excitement since UAE host the event in the Year of Zayed – the 100th birth anniversary of the late Sheikh Zayed Bin Sultan Al Nahyan.
Emirates Cricket Board chairman Sheikh Nahayan Mabarak Al Nahayan said to the National: “This is a very important tournament in the ACC (Asian Cricket Council) calendar, and one we are extremely pleased to secure, especially during the auspicious ‘Year of Zayed’. We extend our sincere thanks to the ACC, Asia Cup hosts BCCI, and all Member Unions for their trust and unanimous support.”
This Asia Cup also brings an India-Pakistan clash in the country for the first time in over a decade. Since the Dubai International Stadium is the biggest one in the country with a capacity of 25,000, the chances of it becoming the venue for the much-awaited clash is high.
There is also a chance, however, that Zayed Cricket Stadium in Abu Dhabi could host the match due to it being renovated. The current capacity of the stadium is 20,000, but it could be extended from the current number.
“We have worked hard over the past three months to restructure some of the stadium,” Matt Boucher, the acting chief executive of Abu Dhabi Cricket, said.
“We are targeting a 25,000 capacity so that we are able to host the world’s biggest cricket event. We will be competitive.
“We are waiting on instructions from the Asian Cricket Council and BCCI. We have reserved the venues, and we will get ready for the next steps.
“We as the UAE are thrilled to be chosen and very pleased Abu Dhabi is a venue. We are looking forward to working with the ACC and hosting India, which is obviously very rare in this part of the world. It is hugely exciting.”
The schedule for the Asia Cup is yet to be announced as fans wait with anxiousness for the India-Pakistan encounter.
Picture credit: Getty Images
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