Political tension between India-Pakistan takes toll on World Cup travel plans
The ICC, meanwhile, has assured the BCCI that robust security will be put in place for the World Cup.
Updated - Mar 4, 2019 9:59 am
The recent turn of events between India and Pakistan in the wake of the Pulwama terror has taken a big toll on cricket. The attack, which was carried out by Pakistan-based militant group Jaish-e-Mohammed, has further deteriorated the bilateral relation between the arch-rivals. The bilateral relation between the two neighbours were already suspended and the recent attack has made sure that the resumption is more than unlikely in coming years.
The Men in Blue have not played a bilateral series against Pakistan since 2012 when the latter visited India for a short ODI and T20I series. Since then both the teams have only played against each other in ICC tournaments or the Asia Cup. They are now scheduled to take on each other in the upcoming World Cup game in Manchester. However, the usual excitement and the buzz around the marquee clash has taken a beating in the wake of the ghastly attack that claimed the lives of 44 CRPF personnel.
And the recent aerial exchange has now dampened the enthusiasm of Kolkata travel agents and cricket fans planning to visit the UK for the high-voltage clash in Manchester on June 16. According to a report in The Times of India (TOI), there was a great demand for the game as the fans enquired for tickets and tour packages. However, the February 26 bombings on Pak-occupied-Kashmir (PoK) and the resulting border tension has reduced the interest by a significant margin. In fact, two agents have stopped procuring tickets for the Indo-Pak.
“We had procured 50 tickets for the match along with those for other India matches that begin with a clash with South Africa on June 5. Over the next few weeks, we were planning to procure another 500 tickets for the Indo-Pak match for that remains the top-draw.
But the war-like situation has now turned the match uncertain and we have asked our UK contacts to stop procuring for the time being. We expect the situation to normalize in a couple of weeks and hope that the match is not called off. If the match happens, we will go ahead and procure the rest of the tickets,” the agent told the news outlet.
Meghdootam Travels – another city agent – also echoed the same sentiments as they revealed that they have also stopped acquiring the tickets for India-Pakistan game.
ICC assures BCCI:
The ICC, meanwhile, has assured the BCCI that robust security will be put in place for the World Cup in England and Wales. The BCCI had expressed its concerns about the safety and security of players and match officials in the wake of the recent exchanges.
“As you would expect for a global sporting event, the ICC, in partnership with the ECB has a robust security plan in place for the Men’s Cricket World Cup. We work closely with the authorities in our host countries to ensure that the safety of players, officials and fans is a priority,” ICC CEO David Richardson said after the quarterly meeting in Dubai last week.