India will open their ODI World Cup campaign against Australia in Chennai on October 8 while Ahmedabad will host their much-anticipated match against arch-rivals Pakistan a week later, according to BCCI’s draft schedule for the tournament. “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.
As per the initial draft, the tournament will begin on October 5 with reigning champions England taking on last edition’s runner-up side New Zealand in Ahmedabad, which will also host the final on November 19.
The venues for the semifinals, which are likely to be played on November 15 and 16, are yet to be decided.
Hosts India, who last won the ODI World Cup in 2011 at home, will play their league phase matches across nine cities, including, Kolkata, Mumbai, New Delhi and Bengaluru. They will take on Pakistan on October 15. Pakistan, meanwhile, will play their league matches across five cities.
“Pakistan are slotted to meet the two teams progressing from the Qualifier on October 6 and 12 in Hyderabad, and then Australia in Bengaluru (October 20), Afghanistan (October 23) and South Africa (October 27) in Chennai, Bangladesh in Kolkata (October 31), New Zealand in Bengaluru (November 5, day match) and England in Kolkata (November 12),” the report read.
Australia’s match against Trans-Tasman rivals New Zealand in Dharamsala on October 29 and against England in Ahmedabad on November 4 are some of the other big fixtures.
A total of 10 teams will participate in the tournament. Out of these, eight teams have already been decided and while two other teams will qualify for the main tournament via the qualifiers.
With a little over four months left for the marquee event to begin, there has been an unprecedented delay in releasing the schedule.
The schedule of the last two editions of the tournament — 2015 and 2019 — was finalised over 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 Aafrica, Nov 5, Kolkata India vs Qualifier, Nov 11, Bengaluru.
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