Cricket fans from North Andhra region have nothing to cheer as Visakhapatnam is unlikely to be the venue of any of the One Day International (ODI) cricket matches to be played in India as part of the ICC Cricket World Cup 2023, scheduled to be hosted by India during October – November this year. Though the ICC is yet to announce the schedule and venues officially, the venues are almost finalised by the BCCI, as per the Andhra Cricket Association (ACA) members.
“It is very unfortunate that we are not given the opportunity. The venues are almost finalised,” said a senior official from Andhra Cricket Association (ACA), when asked about possibility of Vizag hosting any matches of ICC Cricket World Cup 2023. He added: “We have sought some matches, but it has not been finalised. However, if any venue replacement is sought or even as alternative venue, we will be ready,” he said.
As per sources from ACA, Ahmedabad, Chennai, Hyderabad, Delhi, Mohali, Mumbai, Dharmasala, Guwahati, Kolkata and Lucknow have been shortlisted as the venues for the global event this year. The BCCI is mulling to host the finals in Narendra Modi Stadium in Ahmedabad. Once the ongoing Indian Premier League (IPL) concludes, some of the stadiums among the shortlisted ones would be undergoing massive renovation works to ensure proper facilities for the teams and the spectators.
Some of the local cricket enthusiasts expressed displeasure over Visakhapatnam not being considered as a potential venue for the world cup matches despite having good air and road connectivity, star hotels, good infra and proper security.
India has hosted ODI World Cup matches three times so far – 1987, 1996 and 2011. Visakhapatnam’s Indira Priyadarshini Stadium in One Town has hosted a group stage World Cup match between Australia and Kenya on February 23, 1996. Australia emerged victorious in the match with Mark Waugh scoring 130 runs.
The picturesque ACA VDCA Stadium at PM Palem is in operation since 2003, hosting its first ODI match between India and Pakistan during April 2004. It has not got any chance to host any match during the ICC World Cup during the year 2011 and even during the T20 World Cup 2016, which were played in India.
So far, the YSR ACA-VDCA Stadium in Visakhapatnam has hosted 11 ODIs, two Tests and three T20 Internationals.