Thakur terms Dharmasala as right venue for Indo-Pak WT20 tie

Mumbai, Dec 11 (IANS) Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) secretary Anurag Thakur on Friday said Dharamsala was the right place to hold the high-voltage group-stage match of the ICC World Twenty20 between arch-rivals India and Pakistan on March 19, next year.

India will launch their World T20 2016 campaign in Nagpur against New Zealand on March 15, while they will go head-to-head with Pakistan in Dharamsala on March 19. Their other matches will be against the Group A (Bangladesh, the Netherlands, Ireland and Oman) winner in Bengaluru on March 23 and Australia in Mohali on March 27.

“Looking at the heat generated while the discussion was on whether the series will be held between India and Pakistan, it needed a cooler weather and Dharamsala gives the right atmosphere,” Thakur said at a function here where the schedule for the International Cricket Council (ICC) World T20 2016 was announced.

India, who clinched the World T20 title in the inaugural edition in 2007 in South Africa under the leadership of Mahendra Singh Dhoni, also have the experience of delivering on the big matches with the win in the 50-over World Cup in 2011.

“Thodi si thandi jagah honi chahiye jaha pe itna garam match ho (There should be some cold place where such a ‘hot’ match will take place),” Thakus, who is also the president of the Himachal Pradesh Cricket Association (HPCA), said.

The tournament will be staged across eight venues in India from March 8 to April 3. A total of 58 tournament matches, including 35 men’s matches and 23 women’s matches, will be played during the 27-day tournament.

The final will be played at the Eden Gardens in Kolkata on April 3. The women’s semi-finals and final will be followed by the men’s knock-out matches.

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