Pakistan begin T20 defence against Bangladesh
Pakistan will begin the defence of their World Twenty20 title in the Caribbean next year against fellow Asian Test nation Bangladesh in St Lucia on May 1, organisers announced on Sunday.cricket Updated: Jul 05, 2009 20:34 IST
Pakistan will begin the defence of their World Twenty20 title in the Caribbean next year against fellow Asian Test nation Bangladesh in St Lucia on May 1, organisers announced on Sunday.
Pakistan, who beat Sri Lanka by eight wickets in last month's World Twenty20 final at Lord's, will complete its group phase programme at the same venue the following day against Australia.
The West Indies will open the event in Guyana on April 30 against one of two qualifiers for the tournament.
If the West Indies, also in a group with England, reaches the second rounsd Super Eights, they will then go on to play in St Lucia and Barbados, something that would see the hosts play in all three locations for the men's tournament.
India, the inaugural 2007 champions, will start their campaign to regain the trophy with a match against the other qualifier in St Lucia on May 1.
The qualifiers, who will join the 10 full or Test nations in the Caribbean next year, will be drawn from the top two sides at a tournament due to be staged in the United Arab Emirates in October.
During the 2007 50-over World Cup in the Caribbean, organisers were criticised for pricing local fans out of the market for tickets.
But for this event, the maximum price for a first round double-header ticket in Guyana will be 10 US dollars, with Under-16s getting in for free.
And for finals day in Barbados, tickets will range in price from 10 dollars to 40 dollars.
Entry to all first round matches in the women's tournament will be free.
England, who beat New Zealand last month at Lord's in the inaugural women's World Twenty20 final, start their quest for back-to-back titles against Australia in St Kitts - where all the women's group matches are being played - on May 5.
The men's and women's semi-finals will be played in St Lucia, with the finals of both events taking place in Barbados on May 16.
Next year will see Zimbabwe back in the World Twenty20.
They were forced into withdrawing from this year's tournament after the British Government said they would not grant them entry visas because of their disapproval of the policies of Zimbabwe President Robert Mugabe.
The World Twenty20 is intended to be held every two years.
But the decision to hold the third edition of the tournament in 2010 was taken after the 2008 50-overs-a-side Champions Trophy, due to be played in Pakistan, was postponed because of security concerns.
The next Champions Trophy is now due to be played in South Africa this coming September and October.
Without the 2010 World Twenty20 in the Caribbean, there was a risk it would have next been played in the same year as the next 50-over World Cup, due to be staged in the Indian sub-continent in 2011.
By having the World Twenty20 in between its two major 50-over tournaments, the Champions Trophy and the World Cup, the International Cricket Council hopes to ensure a better spread of its major events.