New Year eve bash for Pakistan in Chennai

The original itinerary of Pakistani team’s visit to India in December- January was changed apparently to have the visitors enjoy the New Year’s eve in Chennai, instead of Delhi. A function would most probably be organised for the two teams on December 31.

The change in the itinerary was effected on the behest of N Srinivasan, president of the Board of Control for Cricket in India ( BCCI), who is based in Chennai, and he wanted to host the two teams in his city, according to sources.

According to the original itinerary, the Pakistani team was supposed to play the first One- day International in Delhi and also enjoy the New Year’s eve here.

This is the first time the Pakistani team will be touring India in five years, though they will play only ODIs and Twenty20 Internationals. On their previous visit in late 2007, Pakistan had played a three- Test series and five ODIs “ The BCCI had initially informed the Delhi and District Cricket Association ( DDCA) that Delhi would host the first ODI, after Bangalore and Ahmedabad had hosted the Twenty20 Internationals.

The two T20 Internationals and three ODIs were to be played between Dec 24 and Jan 6. Now, they’ll be played between Dec 25 and Jan 6, with the venues being inter- changed,” the source told M AIL T ODAY . “ Then, at a DDCA executive committee meeting, our president Arun Jaitley told the gathering that the Ferozeshah Kotla would now host the third ODI on December 30. He also dropped enough hints that there would be a special New Year function for the Pakistani and Indian teams in Chennai,” he said.

After the day match in Delhi, the teams would fly off to Chennai on December 31 and would enjoy the New Year’s eve. On January 1 and 2, they would have practice sessions and play the fourth ODI on January 3 at the MA Chidambaram Stadium. They would finish off their short tour with an ODI in Kolkata on January 6 and leave for Pakistan the next day.

Meanwhile, it is learnt that Delhi, Mohali, Kanpur, and Chennai, will host the four Tests against Australian between February 22 and March 26, after the five- match ODI series against England.

The first five- day Test will be played at the Ferozeshah Kotla from February 22. The second match starts on March 2 at the Punjab Cricket Association Stadium in Mohali, and the Green Park Stadium in Kanpur will host the third Test from March 14. The MA Chidambaram Stadium in Chennai will stage the fourth and final Test from March 22.

And just a week after the Australia series, the sixth edition of the Indian Premier League will start, thus providing no respite to Indian players. The 54- day long tournament will start on April 3 and the final will be played on May 26.


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