As the countdown to the start of ticket sales for the 2023 ODI World Cup in India continues, the Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) finds itself facing a fresh challenge. The Hyderabad Cricket Association (HCA) has raised concerns over the ODI World Cup 2023 schedule, driven by the apprehensions expressed by the Hyderabad Police regarding security arrangements for consecutive World Cup matches.
Balancing Security and Schedule
HCA has pointed out that hosting back-to-back World Cup games within a short time span poses significant security challenges. The heightened security arrangement in Hyderabad is now a priority due to Pakistan’s extended stay in the city. Ahead of their participation in the main World Cup matches, Pakistan is set to play two warm-up games in Hyderabad.
Request for Schedule Revision
Earlier this month, a revised schedule for the ODI World Cup 2023 had been announced by BCCI and ICC, leading to rescheduling of as many as nine matches. HCA is scheduled to host two games: Pakistan vs Sri Lanka on October 10 and New Zealand vs Netherlands on October 9. Concerned about security logistics, HCA has formally requested BCCI for a change in the schedule, advocating for a minimum one-day gap between the two matches.
Collaboration with Stakeholders
An HCA official, speaking on the condition of anonymity, emphasized the importance of maintaining an adequate time gap between two World Cup games. The association is actively collaborating with security agencies to explore the feasibility of the request while ensuring BCCI’s involvement and awareness of the ongoing discussions.
Rajeev Shukla, BCCI vice-president, acknowledges the complexities but highlights the difficulty in altering the World Cup schedule. Shukla notes that the decision involves various stakeholders, including teams and ICC, making schedule changes unlikely. Despite the challenges, he remains committed to resolving any issues related to the Hyderabad venue for the World Cup.
The Hyderabad Police, responsible for event security, typically deploys between 2000-2500 personnel for international matches. The exact deployment varies based on factors such as the nature of the game and expected turnout.
The evolving situation regarding the ODI World Cup 2023 schedule highlights the intricate balance between cricketing events and security imperatives. As the BCCI and HCA engage in discussions to find a viable solution, all eyes remain on the preparations for this high-stakes tournament.
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