The subcontinent will make the 2011 World Cup more spectator-friendly with affordable ticket prices. It is also likely that there will be changes to the format of the tournament.
India, Pakistan, Sri Lanka and Bangladesh host the game's premier tournament in four years' time and the statement comes in the wake of the Caribbean World Cup, widely lambasted for, among other things, failing to draw sufficient crowds to matches due to high ticket prices.
"We promise a spectator- and media-friendly World Cup in four years time," said Sharad Pawar, chairman of the 2011 World Cup Organising Committee, after their first meeting in Bhurban, a northern hill station near Islamabad.
"We will make unrelenting efforts to make the event a spectacular one so that more and more people come and watch the best cricket," said Pawar, also the president of the Board of Control for Cricket in India.
Though Pawar didn't comment directly on whether lessons will be learnt from the Caribbean event, he said, "it's a pertinent issue and will be discussed at the ICC meeting later this month.
"We assure that prices of the tickets will be affordable to the local paying capacity," said Pawar. The committee is also looking at common visas for India, Pakistan, Sri Lanka and Bangladesh, a practice established by Caribbean nations for this year's competition.
There is also the possibility that the format of the tournament might change; at 47 days long the last tournament was thought by many to be too long. "The format for the World Cup 2011 needs to be re-examined and will be discussed with the ICC," Nasim Ashraf, committee member and chairman PCB, said. A request for special grants for the upgrade of venues will also be made to the ICC.
Lahore has been chosen as the headquarters for the organising committee and local organising committees (LOCs) are to be set up for each country by November this year. The next committee meeting will be held in India in November-December this year.