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June 18, 2007
Chandigarh's Sector 16 stadium is likely to host its first one-day international in 14 years when Australia tour India later this year. The venue has been slotted for the fourth ODI on October 8 instead of the initially-scheduled game at Guwahati, but following the change the Assam Cricket Association will stage a match there against Pakistan on November 6.
The Indian board (BCCI) and the Haryana Cricket Association (HCA) agreed to host the game there after some deliberation as the HCA was first allotted the opening ODI of the series against Pakistan.
Confirming this, the BCCI joint secretary MP Pandove told Chandigarh's Newsline, "The BCCI has okayed the HCA's proposal to shift international matches allotted to them from Faridabad to Chandigarh. A team from the International Cricket Council (ICC) would be visiting the city in July to inspect whether the stadium could host an international match."
The last ODI hosted by the city was an India-England match in January 1993.
"The stadium [at Chandigarh] has good facilities and experience of hosting international cricket before," said Ranbir Mahendra, the HCA secretary. "I would be coordinating with the administration soon for making the facilities at the stadium match the international standards. If this match is organised well, many international matches could be in line for Chandigarh."
SK Sandhu, the finance and sports secretary, said the immediate plans for the stadium were "on track". "The stadium is almost ready; an electronic scoreboard would come up soon. The press box also needs furnishing, as both national as well as international media would be there to cover the game. We have sufficient funds, you will find an international-class stadium ready when the match would be played here."
Australia will now play at Bangalore, Kochi, Hyderabad, Chandigarh, Baroda, Nagpur and Mumbai and Pakistan will play at Guwahati, Mohali, Kanpur, Gwalior and Jaipur.
© ESPN Sports Media Ltd.