NEW DELHI: Pakistan's women cricketers in India for the World Cup are staying in the stadium premises instead of a hotel for security reasons, the International Cricket Council said on Tuesday.
The entire squad is living in the club house of the Barabati stadium in the eastern city of Cuttack where Pakistan are due to play its matches in the eight-nation tournament starting on Thursday.
“I can confirm the team is staying at the Barabati stadium,” an ICC spokeswoman told AFP from Cuttack.
“The ICC considered all options and the best security for the teams, and we have chosen to use the Barabati stadium club house.”
Cuttack was added as a last-minute venue after the right-wing nationalist Shiv Sena party threatened to disrupt Pakistan's matches in Mumbai, where the entire tournament was originally scheduled to be played.
Matches in group B -- featuring Pakistan, Australia, New Zealand and South Africa -- were shunted to Cuttack, where Pakistan will remain if they qualify for the second round.
But the Pakistani team will still have to travel to Mumbai if they make the final at the Brabourne stadium on February 17.
Pakistan team manager Ayesha Ashar said the entire squad was happy with the arrangements made at the Barabati stadium.
“The arrangements are more like we get in Pakistan,” Ashar was quoted as saying by the Press Trust of India news agency.
“We are happy with the facilities provided to us by the organisers.”
Pakistan open their campaign against Australia at the Barabati stadium on Friday.
HAVE YOUR SAY:
-Keeping in mind the situation the Pakistani team is faced with in India, should the ICC play a more decisive role?
-Are the ICC and the BCCI setting a precedent for all future matches that Pakistan may be involved in in India?
-Being bound to the hotel (stadium in this case) has been cited by FICA and most international teams as a major concern when talk of touring Pakistan comes up. Will it affect the performance of Sana Mir's team in any way?
-If travelling around in India is not a safe option for the Pakistan women's team, is it right for the World Cup to go ahead over there?