News

Pakistan agree to World Cup schedule change, to play India on October 14

Pakistan will now play Sri Lanka on October 10 instead of October 12, to have enough of a gap before the match against India

India will play Pakistan in Ahmedabad on October 14  •  Getty Images

India will play Pakistan in Ahmedabad on October 14  •  Getty Images

The India-Pakistan game at the 2023 ODI World Cup will now be played on October 14 rather than the scheduled date of October 15 as released in the original ICC schedule. Though the ICC is yet to release a revised schedule, which is expected by the end of this week, ESPNcricinfo understands the PCB has agreed to the change. The match will still be played in Ahmedabad.
The date change for the World Cup's biggest clash has an impact on Pakistan's preceding fixture, against Sri Lanka in Hyderabad. The venue remains the same but the game will now be played on October 10 instead of October 12, allowing Pakistan a sufficient gap between the two matches.
The need for a change in the schedule reportedly arose because the original date for the India-Pakistan fixture was also the first day of the Hindu festival of Navaratri and local police were concerned that it would be difficult to provide adequate security on the day. The ICC wrote to the PCB a few days ago about the changes and the PCB agreed.
BCCI secretary Jay Shah, however, had said the clash with Navaratri wasn't the reason for the change. He said last week that several Full Member countries had requested changes to the World Cup schedule and that several tweaks would be made.
The change of the India-Pakistan date will almost certainly have an impact on other games and teams. October 14 is already a double-header, featuring games between Bangladesh and New Zealand in Chennai and Afghanistan and England in Delhi. The latter game is likely to be affected, potentially played a day earlier (October 13).
The changes to the schedule, two months away from the ODI World Cup, come after the original schedule was already extremely delayed. It was finally released by the BCCI and the ICC at the end of June just 100 days before the start of the tournament. In comparison, the fixtures for the 2019 World Cup in England and Wales and the 2015 World Cup in Australia and New Zealand were released more than 12 months in advance.
The tournament is scheduled to begin on October 5, with reigning champions England taking on New Zealand in Ahmedabad, but the ICC and the BCCI have also not yet announced when match tickets will go on sale.