Canada will hold the world’s first Twenty20 quadrangular series next month involving Pakistan, West Indies, Bangladesh and the host team.
To be held from August 14-17, the Twenty20 series will be the first big show of cricket in Canada after the Sahara Cup series between India and Pakistan in the late 1990s.
“On Friday morning we signed an agreement with Karachi-based Sports International Marketing to stage this big event on the Canadian soil. We needed a big promoter, and they will organise the show for us under International Cricket Council (ICC) guidelines,” Cricket Canada CEO Atul Ahuja said.
He said Pakistan and Bangladesh have already confirmed their participation. “The West Indies is likely to give the green signal any day. They all are sending full-strength teams,” said Ahuja.
With the domestic Twenty20 Scotiabank Championship getting a huge response here, the Cricket Canada expects the quadrangular series to be a runaway success.
“Over 10,000 spectators are expected at all Twenty20 matches to be held at King City. This will be big boost for cricket in Canada, and a big boost for our revenues,” the Cricket Canada CEO said.
With the ICC, two top Canadian banks and the federal government now sponsoring cricket, the sport has got a boost during the last few months in this country which incidentally was the first to declare cricket as its national sport in 1867.
Cricket has undergone a sea change since young Indian-origin Ahuja took over as CEO just eight months ago.
“We have got the Canadian government and Scotiabank sponsoring us. We have a new name, we have a new logo, and we have a new uniform. And we are set to go up the world rankings,” Ahuja said.