People queued overnight outside of banks in the Bangladeshi capital of Dhaka in a desperate bid to buy highly prized cricket World Cup tickets, which went on sale on Sunday.
Two leading Bangladeshi banks are selling tickets for eight matches at the Feb. 19-April 2 tournament, to be
jointly hosted along with India and Sri Lanka, from their 80 branches across the country.
People started gathering in front of the banks on Saturday morning, braving cool weather but there were expected to be a number of disappointed fans.
The Bangladesh Cricket Board (BCB) said the Sher-e-Bangla National Stadium, which will host six matches including the opener between India and Bangladesh, has a seating capacity of 25,167 but only 15,167 tickets are available for local spectators.
The remainder of the tickets are to be reserved for the International Cricket Council, foreign visitors and other stakeholders.
There is a similar situation at the Zohur Ahmed Chowdhury Stadium in Chittagong, which will host Bangladesh's group matches against England and Netherlands, with 12,521 tickets made available for locals at the 17,800 capacity venue.
The BCB apologized to the fans on Saturday as most of them will be deprived of a ticket.
"I am trying to get a ticket for World Cup, but it's very crowded here," said Enna Karmakarm, a cricket fan, who was waiting in front of a bank in Dhaka's Karwan Bazar area.
"I am afraid I would not be able get a ticket. But if I get a ticket I will definitely go to the field and enjoy the match," said the 26-year-old university student. Rinku, another cricket fan, who stood in the queue on Saturday, was also unsure of his luck.
"I waited here (the) whole night to see World Cup matches, which will be taking place in Bangladesh for the first time. I don't know whether I will get the tickets, but if I get (one) I will go to the stadium and inspire our cricket team."