Sports News – Pakistan’s matches in the forthcoming Women’s World Cup have been moved from Mumbai because of a right-wing nationalist group’s threat to disrupt them, cricket officials said on Friday.
The entire eight-nation event, to be held from January 31 to February 17, was due to take place in the financial city but the International Cricket Council (ICC) has revised its schedule following Shiv Sena’s planned protests.
The eastern city of Cuttack will now host all of Group B’s matches, featuring Pakistan, Australia, New Zealand and South Africa.
Pakistan will play its three league games at Cuttack’s Test venue, the Barabati Stadium, while the other group games will be held at the nearby Driems cricket ground.
Pakistan will stay in Cuttack if they qualify for the second round, but will still have to travel to Mumbai if they make the final, the ICC said in a statement.
Group A matches between defending champions England, India, the West Indies and Sri Lanka will remain in Mumbai as originally scheduled.
The dates of the tournament also remained unchanged.
Shiv Sena’s anger stems from recent border tension between India and Pakistan.
Tension was heightened in early January by a series of cross-border exchanges in disputed Kashmir along the de facto border known as the Line of Control.
Protests by Shiv Sena in Mumbai has already forced organisers of the inaugural Hockey India League to withdraw nine Pakistani players from the tournament and sent them home.
ICC chief executive David Richardson said in the statement that he was glad the governing body had come out of a “difficult situation which was not of cricket’s making”.(AFP)