Kolkata: The UAE’s reputation as a ‘safe country’ to host high-profile sporting events received another endorsement with the International Cricket Council (ICC) and Indian cricket board entrusting them to stage the T20 World Cup in October-November this year, according to Khalid Al Zarooni, Vice President of Emirates Cricket Board.
ICC, world governing body of the game, confirmed on Tuesday that the ICC Men’s T20 World Cup 2021 will be staged in the UAE and Oman due from October 17 to November 14 due to the ongoing COVID-19 situation in India. The BCCI will remain the hosts of the event, which will now be held in Dubai International Stadium, Sheikh Zayed Stadium in Abu Dhabi, Sharjah Cricket Stadium and the Oman Cricket Academy Ground. While Oman are supposed to host the Qualifiers from October 17, the three international venues of UAE will move into action for the main event once the wickets are handed over to the ICC are rested as per guidelines after the completion of IPL 2021.
We would have been happier hosting it in India but considering the uncertainty due to the Covid 19 situation and the importance of a world championship, the BCCI will now continue to host this tournament in UAE and Oman
“Emirates Cricket Board is honoured that the BCCI and the ICC have entrusted us with staging and delivering the ICC Men’s T20 World Cup. The UAE’s reputation as being a safe country in which to host high-profile sporting events is a strong compliment to our government’s unwavering commitment to implementing and monitoring effective health practices during the pandemic. Having hosted a number of high-profile tournaments in recent months, our team is well-prepared and ready to mobilise to ensure the success of the ICC Men’s T20 World Cup,” Al Zarooni said in a statement.
Pankaj Khimji, chairman of Oman Cricket, said: “It is indeed a great moment for Oman Cricket to be selected as a venue/host of the forthcoming ICC Men’s T20 World Cup. We shall leave no stone unturned to exceed the requirements of BCCI and ICC. Oman will certainly extend a very warm welcome to all the teams, officials and media in October.”
UAE proven international host
Geoff Allardice, Acting ICC CEO, said: “Our priority is to deliver the ICC Men’s T20 World Cup 2021 safely, in full and in its current window. Whilst we are incredibly disappointed not to be hosting the event in India, the decision gives us the certainty we need to stage the event in a country that is a proven international host of multi-team events in a bio-secure environment. We will work closely with the BCCI, the Emirates Cricket Board and Oman Cricket to ensure fans can enjoy a wonderful celebration of cricket.”
Sourav Ganguly, former India captain and BCCI president, said: “The BCCI is looking forward to hosting the ICC Men’s T20 World Cup 2021 tournament in UAE and Oman. We would have been happier hosting it in India but considering the uncertainty due to the Covid 19 situation and the importance of a world championship, the BCCI will now continue to host this tournament in UAE and Oman. The BCCI is looking forward to creating a spectacle.”