POLL: Dharamsala or Kolkata — Where did you want to see India play Pakistan in ICC World T20 2016?

The India-Pakistan ICC World T20 2016 clash has been one of the most eagerly awaited contests since the days it was announced. Indian cricket team was expected to play a bilateral series against Pakistan in UAE last year but that didn’t happen because of the political tension between both the neighbouring nations as well as Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI)’s decision to not to play a series in the gulf.

This was the beginning of a series of dramatic developments to follow, as from there on, Pakistan started threatening to boycott ICC World Twenty20 tournament which has commenced in India. The issue seemed to be sorted after the announcement of the match between arch-rivals at the beautiful ground of Dharamsala in Himachal Pradesh.

But then came another fresh row as Pakistan wanted a security check and after going through it, they refused to play at the venue and asked ICC to reschedule the match at Eden Gardens, Kolkata or Punjab Cricket Association (PCA) Stadium in Mohali. ICC, after consulting with the BCCI, agreed to reschedule the match at Eden Gardens, considering little about those fans and spectators who were eagerly waiting and had bought tickets for this epic encounter at Dharamsala. The sudden change of venue at the eleventh hour caused a huge heartbreak for fans.

No doubt that Eden Gardens is amongst the best grounds in India but is it right to change the venue of such high-voltage match at the last moment? Even the former Indian captain Sourav Ganguly, who himself is from Kolkata, expressed his disappointment over shifting of venue of the match and said, “It must be a sad moment for them for no fault of theirs. I feel for Himachal Pradesh Cricket Association (HPCA) and Dharamsala. I sympathise with Anurag Thakur and people of Himachal for what has happened. It’s one of the best stadiums of the country and could have hosted the game very easily,” he was quoted saying in a PTI report.

Both the grounds are considered to be world class venues but shifting this match seems a politically motivated move, which has nothing to do with the game.