India and Pakistan have been confirmed to play their ICC World T20 2016 match at Dharamsala on March 19. There were reports claiming the same earlier but now it is confirmed by the ICC at the official launch of the tournament in Mumbai. But, what still remains under a cloud of doubt is Pakistan’s very participation in the tournament on the whole. Political tensions between the two countries have spilled onto the cricketing affairs as a result of which a planned series between India and Pakistan in Sri Lanka was called off. As a retaliation, the Pakistan government are considering withdrawing from the tournament. There is no official word on the same at this stage but clarification is soon expected.
The ICC World T20 2016 hosting rights were awarded to India and will see a total of 16 teams compete in two rounds. The first round will be to determine two teams from a pool of eight to qualify into the tournament proper. The preliminary round to determine the two qualifiers will be Bangladesh, Zimbabwe, Scotland, Ireland, Hong Kong, Netherlands, Afghanistan and Oman. Out of these, Bangladesh and Zimbabwe automatically got in the pool on account of being bottom-ranked full members. The other six teams got through on basis of their standings in a 14-team qualifying tournament.
The main group will witness the remainder of the full members in addition to the two teams that make it through from the first group. The pre-qualified teams are determined on basis of T20I ranking among the full members. India, Australia, England, New Zealand, Pakistan, South Africa, Sri Lanka and West Indies are the teams who are in this group.
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