LAHORE -  The Blind Cricket World Cup final will now be played on January 20 at Sharjah instead of Lahore’s famous Gaddafi Stadium. “We have shifted the venue from Lahore to Sharjah after a meeting with World Blind Cricket Council (WBCC) president Mahantesh GH from India,” said WBCC chairman Syed Sultan Shah here Tuesday from Sharjah.

He said Mahantesh, who is also president of Cricket Association of Blind in India (CABI), said in the meeting that their government has not given them permission to visit Pakistan, which is quite unfortunate. “It was our utmost desire to visit Pakistan to play matches of the Cup in Pakistan and as the permission was not granted to us by our government, but we were left with no option but to play our pool matches in UAE as well as the final. We always like to visit Pakistan and feel happy to play cricket there,” Mahantesh said.

“I feel sorry for the lovers of the game in Pakistan for not playing cricket in Pakistan. I am confident that our team will tour Pakistan in near future to play bilateral series,” he added.

WBCC chairman Syed Sultan said they were all set to hold the final of the mega event in Lahore as all preparations were made but the Indian authorities did not grant permission to its team to visit Pakistan to play the final.

“We organised the matches of the World Blind Cricket Cup in different cities of the Punjab in a best possible way and foreign teams expressed their satisfaction and delight the way these matches were staged,” he added.

He said keeping in view the prevailing circumstances and the situation, the WBCC, with mutual understanding, has decided to organise the final in Sharjah. “Pakistan and India are the two top teams of the world blind cricket and we have taken the decision in the larger interest of the game. We are confident that Indian blind cricket team will visit Pakistan during the current year to play bilateral series,” Sultan added.


Our Staff Reporter