Delhi set to lose hosting rights for World Twenty20

Delhi is set to be removed as a venue for the World Twenty20, to be played in India from March 8, after having failed to procure requisite clearances from the government authorities. The decision is likely to be formalised during the board meetings of the International Cricket Council (ICC) in Dubai over the next four days.

Ferozeshah Kotla had already lost its hosting opportunity for a Twenty20 against Sri Lanka, ahead of the big event.   -  Sushil Kumar Verma

Delhi is set to be removed as a venue for the World Twenty20, to be played in India from March 8, after having failed to procure requisite clearances from the government authorities. The decision is likely to be formalised during the board meetings of the International Cricket Council (ICC) in Dubai over the next four days.

On Friday, Anurag Thakur, the Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) secretary, had stated the Delhi and District Cricket Association (DDCA) had been given a deadline of Sunday evening to submit all the clearances. Even before the deadline was to expire, DDCA authorities, sensing trouble, have sought for a 10-day extension to complete all the formalities.

A BCCI official, involved in organising the marquee event that will be staged in India for the first time, confirmed to The Hindu that the BCCI is “in no way in a position” to extend the deadline. “There is absolutely no time any longer. The tournament is five weeks away. And even after ten days, if they (DDCA) fail to get clearances, the BCCI will be in a soup,” he said.

Bangalore for semifinal?

Delhi had been allotted four games, including a semifinal on March 30, for the World Twenty20. During its Board meeting, the ICC is likely to allot the games to one of the existing seven centres shortlisted for hosting the tournament.

It will be interesting to see the rescheduling of the prestigious semifinal. With the Wankhede Stadium in Mumbai set to stage the other semifinal, Delhi was supposed to host the semifinal featuring Pakistan, if they qualify. Considering the security situation, Bangalore, who hasn’t been allotted an India match, is tipped to be allotted the semifinal.