IPL beckons for Northeast as Guwahati gears up for 2 matches

Guwahati, Mar 30 (PTI) The Northeast is all set to debut as an Indian Premier League (IPL) host for the first time since the marquee tournament started, with two Rajasthan Royals’ ‘home’ games scheduled in Assam’s Guwahati next month.

The Assam Cricket Association (ACA) Stadium has been designated as one of the ‘home’ venues for RR, which will take on the Punjab Kings on April 5 and Delhi Capitals on April 8.

“We were allotted two IPL matches of RR in 2020. But, the matches couldn’t happen due to the outbreak of COVID-19. We are happy two games have been scheduled here this year,” ACA secretary Tridib Konwar told PTI.

He said preparations are in full swing, and ACA is working in close coordination with the Rajasthan Royals team.

“We urge the cricket lovers of Assam as well as the entire Northeast to come and watch the matches. Rajasthan Royals has already started online ticketing for the games,” Konwar said.

The Jaipur-based franchise had earlier partnered with the association for a cricket academy, which is now functional at the ACA Stadium.

Devajit Saikia, joint secretary of the Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI), said there are a lot of aspiring cricketers who cannot make it to the national side due to tough competition, and the IPL is a good opportunity for them.

All eyes will be on local boy Riyan Parag, who plays for the Rajasthan Royals, during the two matches at Guwahati.

Budding cricketers Rohit and Kamal, who are a regular at one the academies in Guwahati, said they cannot contain their excitement to watch their Riyan ‘da’ (elder brother) in action.

“We are happy that the IPL is finally happening here. It is the biggest tournament for us,” Kamal said.

“The Rajasthan Royals will be facing tough teams with star players. But, we are confident they will win and our Riyan ‘da’ will perform well,” added Rohit.

Roshan Basfor, who plays cricket along with Rohit and Kamal, hoped that organising the two IPL matches at Guwahati will make a case for the stadium to host matches of the 50-over World Cup, which is scheduled to be held in India later this year.

“Guwahati has already made it to the long list of probable World Cup venues. We have seen a good wicket here in previous international matches, and are hopeful that the stadium will get a chance to host World Cup games,” Basfor said.

Source: PTI News


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