Four-nation Twenty20 tournament doubts
Media reports confirming a four-nation Twenty20 tournament in Toronto, involving hosts Canada, Bangladesh, Pakistan and West Indies in August, are premature, according to sources inside Canada.
"There were some teething problems initially but now everything is going according to plan," Noman Nabi, chairman of Sports International Marketing - the company staging the August 14-17 tournament - told the News earlier this week. Nabi added packed stadiums were expected for the event, with approximately 12,000 spectators expected for each game.
The tournament faced major hiccups last month when the original organisers backed out. "We only came in the picture last month and signed an MoU with the Pakistan Cricket Board (PCB) in mid-June," Nabi said. He said they had signed an MoU with the Bangladesh Cricket Board while all terms and conditions have been verbally agreed with the top officials of Cricket Canada.
"They [Cricket Canada] have assured us that they would soon confirm the participation of the West Indies in the tournament," he said. Noman said there was a delay in confirming the four-day event as Cricket Canada were a "bit apprehensive" about the venture after the earlier organisers backed out.
"The PCB has been very supportive," he said. "The tournament is aimed at building Pakistan's image in Canada because a successful Twenty20 tournament will help revive cricket in that country.
"Canada has a big Pakistani community and since the event will begin on August 14 we believe it would be a perfect time to celebrate [Pakistan's] Independence Day there."