The Babar Azam-led Pakistan team departed for India early on Wednesday to participate in the upcoming ICC Men’s Cricket World Cup 2023, slated to begin on October 5.
As per reports, the Green Brigade left at 3.20 am (PST) from the Allama Iqbal International Airport, Lahore and will make a brief halt in Dubai before taking another flight to Hyderabad (India). Pakistan will reportedly land in Hyderabad around 8:30 pm (IST) on September 27 (Wednesday).
While bowling coach Morne Morkel will be joining the team in Dubai, team director Mickey Arthur will join them in India.
The Green Brigade will be having training session on Thursday before playing their first warm-up match against New Zealand on September 29 behind closed doors in Hyderabad.
Ahead of leaving for India, skipper Babar urged Pakistan fans to pray for their team’s success.
“As we head for the World Cup, we seek prayers of all the Pakistan cricket team fans and well-wishers. I am certain that you will continue to extend your support and love, which you have always done. Pakistan Zindabad,” Babar wrote on his official X handle.
Earlier late on Monday, the uncertainty over Pakistan’s participation in the showpiece event finally came to an end after visas were issued to the Green Brigade.
The ICC confirmed of visa issuance after complaints of a delay in the process.
Earlier, the Pakistan Cricket Board (PCB) wrote to the ICC about the visa delay which, it said, had disrupted the team’s preparation for the showpiece event, set to begin on October 5.
Notably, the Green Brigade will play two warm-up games before beginning their 2023 World Cup campaign. Both the matches will be held at the Rajiv Gandhi International Stadium in Hyderabad.
Pakistan will take on New Zealand in their first warm-up match in Hyderabad on September 29 before facing Australia on October 3 at the same venue.
Later, the highly-anticipated clash between India and Pakistan will be played on October 14 at the Narendra Modi stadium in Ahmedabad.
Pakistan squad for ICC World Cup 2023
Babar Azam (c), Abdullah Shafique, Fakhar Zaman, Imam-ul-Haq, Iftikhar Ahmed, Mohammad Rizwan (wk), Shadab Khan, Mohammad Nawaz, Usama Mir, Haris Rauf, M Wasim Jnr, Hasan Ali, Shaheen Shah Afridi, Saud Shakeel, Salman Ali Agha
Mohammad Haris, Abrar Ahmed, Zaman Khan
Schedule of Pakistan’s warm-up matches:
September 29 — vs New Zealand in Hyderabad
October 3 — vs Australia in Hyderabad
Pakistan’s schedule at ICC World Cup 2023:
October 6 — vs Netherlands in Hyderabad
October 10 — vs Sri Lanka in Hyderabad
October 14 — vs India in Ahmedabad
October 20 — vs Australia in Bengaluru
October 23 — vs Afghanistan in Chennai
October 27 — vs South Africa in Chennai
October 31 — vs Bangladesh in Kolkata
November 4 — vs New Zealand Bengaluru (Day match)
November 11 — vs England in Kolkata