Two Days To Go – World Cup Opens With A Gala Ceremony




ICC Cricket World Cup 2011

ICC Cricket World Cup 2011

The biggest event in the game – the World Cup – returns to its new power centre, the Indian sub-continent, for the third time with a gala opening ceremony on Thursday. Amid tight security, Dhaka is all set to usher in 43 days of riveting action spread across 13 venues in three countries with a mesmerizing 135 minute routine of song, dance and laser shows at Bangabandhu National Stadium. On Saturday, Bangladesh and co-host India clash in the inaugural game at the Sher-e-Bangla National Stadium here. The other host country, Sri Lanka starts off its campaign against Canada in Group ‘A’ encounter in Colombo on Sunday. Of the three South Asian neighbours, India has organized the event with Pakistan in 1987, while Sri Lanka joined the duo during 1996. For the first time co-host Bangladesh, honor has coincided with a historic occasion, as 2011 marks the silver jubilee of its first ever ODI game against Pakistan in 1986. The World Cup featuring 14 teams and 49 matches has not been without its share of controversies. Terrorism, the tardy pace of preparations and the weather proved major hindrances.

Another big win for India:

Meanwhile, Indian team emerged out with a colorful victory over New Zealand in the practice match held at the Chepauk Ground, Chennai on Wednesday. The Indian batsmen, led by M. S. Dhoni’s unbeaten 108, inflicted a 117 run defeat on New Zealand in their second and final warm up match. After Dhoni chose to bat, Tendulkar and Sehwag, who played only a few ODIs in the last year, fell early. However, Gambir and Kohli at the third and fourth order respectively, nailed their respective slots with half centuries each. They both threatened the New Zealand bowlers, accumulating 106 runs. Dhoni, who stepped in after Kohli’s wicket, went amazing. He hit seven consecutive boundaries at one stage. Dhoni and Raina fed off a sequence of long hops, full tosses and short balls, blasting 124 runs from 56 balls.

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