Asian Games 2023: Harmanpreet Kaur's eligibility relies on India's finale qualification

Indian cricket captain Harmanpreet's eligibility for Asian Games depends on the team's final entry, and Men's team faces a tough schedule

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Harmanpreet Kaur
Harmanpreet Kaur (Photo Source: Twitter)

Harmanpreet Kaur, the captain of Indian women's cricket team, will only be eligible to participate in the upcoming Asian Games if India manage to secure a spot in the finals of the event, which commences on September 23 in Hangzhou.

The ICC T20I rankings on June 1 have granted direct entry to four teams each in the men's and women's events, namely India, Pakistan, Sri Lanka, and Bangladesh, who will all start from the last eight stage. Notably, all matches during the event will carry official T20I status.

Harmanpreet has been handed a two-match ban by the ICC following her on-field outburst and open criticism of the umpires in the third ODI of the series against Bangladesh. The ban renders her ineligible to play in the quarter-finals, which are expected to be against an associate nation, followed by the semi-finals against a full-member nation.

Meanwhile, the men's team, led by Ruturaj Gaikwad, has also secured a direct entry into the quarter-finals based on their ICC T20 ranking on June 1. The men's event will involve 18 teams, while the women's event will comprise 14 teams.

The women's competition is scheduled to commence on September 19, concluding with the gold and bronze medal matches on September 26. On the other hand, the men's event will begin on September 28, with the final scheduled for October 7, just two days after the men's ICC 50-over World Cup kicks off in Ahmedabad. Should India men's team qualify for the final, they will face the grueling task of playing on three consecutive days on October 5 (quarter-final), October 6 (semi-final), and October 7 (final).

It is highly likely that India's quarter-final opponents will be a second-string Afghanistan or Bangladesh team, as their first teams are scheduled to be in India during that period for the World Cup. The men's team is unlikely to arrive at the Games Village before the commencement of the opening ceremony, as they have nearly two weeks before their campaign begins. Moreover, the BCCI is yet to confirm whether the cricket teams will be accommodated in the Games Village or a facility within the city.

Overall, the Hangzhou Games will host a total of 32 matches across the men's and women's events, with the women's segment accounting for 14 games and the men's segment featuring 18.

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