Cricket World Cup 2023: Pakistan's Visas For India Delayed, To Reach Hyderabad Just 2 Days Before Warm-Up Game Vs New Zealand Babar Azam. (Source: X)

The Babar Azam-led Pakistan cricket team’s visas for travel to India for the ICC ODI World Cup 2023 have been delayed by a few days which has shelved their preparation plans. As per a report in ESPNcricinfo, the Pakistani team was supposed to travel to Dubai first early next week for a team bonding exercise before heading to Hyderabad from there. Pakistan play their first warm-up fixture in Hyderabad against New Zealand on September 29.

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Now, after the delay in getting the visa clearance, they will travel to Delhi first from Lahore early Wednesday and from there, take the next flight to Lahore. The application for the visas was reportedly done to over a week ago and some in PCB have called the situation as ‘alarming’. 

_ Our squad for the ICC World Cup 2023 _#WeHaveWeWill | #CWC23
— Pakistan Cricket (@TheRealPCB) September 22, 2023

It has also been learnt that Pakistan are the only  side out of the nine which will be landing in India for the World Cup who are still awaiting their visas. The Australian cricket team is already in India to play the World Cup while rest of the teams have also got the clearance to enter the country and will be reaching India in the coming week.

The Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) and Pakistan Cricket Board (PCB) have already been at loggerheads so many times in the last one year. Pakistan’s participation in the ODI World Cup was also not confirmed after BCCI refused to travel across the border to play the Asia Cup. As a result, the continental tournament was played in a hybrid model suggested by the then PCB chairman Najam Sethi. But Pakistan got to host just four matches while other fixtures, including the final, were hosted by Sri Lanka.

In retailation, PCB too wanted a hybrid model for the World Cup. But that was denied. Pakistan, reportedly, wanted to play their matches in Bangladesh. However, when that was denied, the Pakistani government eventually cleared the team to go to India to play the World Cup, stating they did not want politics to come in between sporting ties.

The warm-up betweeen Pakistan and New Zealand will be played behind closed doors as the Hyderabad police had told the Hyderabad Cricket Association about their failure to provide full security for the travelling teams in wake of religious festivals that fall a day before. Pakistan play their first World Cup match vs Netherlands on October 6 at Hyderabad.

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