The Pakistan cricket team will be landing in India on Wednesday evening to participate in the upcoming 2023 ODI World Cup, but Morne Morkel and Mickey Arthur will join the team later in Hyderabad.
Pakistan hired Morkel as its fast bowling coach, while Arthur was appointed as its director of cricket earlier this year in March.
Top sources in the Pakistan Cricket Board (PCB) have confirmed to Sportstar that the Babar Azam-led side will be taking an early morning flight on Wednesday morning from Lahore to Dubai and then take a connecting flight to India later in the day.
The entire Pakistan squad has assembled in Lahore and will travel along with the support staff for the World Cup matches. “The team will be taking a flight from Lahore at 3:30 AM to Dubai, and there will be a layover for about nine hours in Dubai. The team will then take a connecting flight and reach Hyderabad on Wednesday evening for the World Cup,” the PCB source told Sportstar.
Morkel, Arthur to join team later
Pakistan will be playing its first World Cup warm-up match against New Zealand on September 29 at the Rajiv Gandhi Cricket Stadium behind closed doors.
The decision to not allow fans to witness the warm-up game was taken as per the advice of the security agencies due to two religious festivals culminating on the same day.
Morkel will fly to Hyderabad from South Africa, while Arthur will take the flight from London and the duo will join the team on Saturday after the first warm-up game. Grant Bradburn, the head coach of Pakistan, and batting coach Andrew Puttick will travel with the team on Wednesday.
“Morkel and Arthur will join the team by the 30th (Saturday) and the rest of the squad remains the same. There won’t be any change in the schedule,” the source said.
New Zealand to arrive in two batches
The New Zealand cricket team will be arriving in the city on Tuesday night for the 2023 World Cup, and according to the itinerary, the Black Caps will be arriving in two batches. While the first batch lands on Tuesday, the second one will be in the city on Wednesday evening.
“All arrangements have been made, and there won’t be any issue in terms of security. All protocols will be strictly in place and we have taken measures to receive the teams in the best possible way. The hotels have been arranged, and every minute detail has been covered. We welcome all the teams and it will be a special one,” a source told Sportstar.
Luxurious hotels in the city have been booked for New Zealand, Pakistan, Australia, the Netherlands, and Sri Lanka, with layered security in and around the vicinity covering all the visiting teams.
“We are in constant touch with the security agencies, and we have covered all bases. From food to practice grounds, everything is in place. There won’t be any compromise in security, and we are excited to host the World Cup,” the source said.
Thiruvananthapuram, Hyderabad, and Guwahati are the three venues where teams will be playing the warm-up games ahead of the tournament opener that starts on October 5.
Hyderabad has been allocated two World Cup warm-up matches, with Pakistan taking on New Zealand on September 29 and Australia meeting Pakistan on October 3. The World Cup fever has gripped the city, with the teams starting to arrive for the carnival and fans eager to watch their cricketing idols in action.
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