'Maybe a bit of paycheck for WTC final': Ponting, Nasser Hussain's telling reaction on India's ODI WC opener vs AUS
While last edition's repeat of the final will kick off the proceedings at the Narendra Modi Stadium, India will open their campaign against Australia
On Tuesday, the International Cricket Council (ICC) announced the schedule for the impending 2023 ODI World Cup at an event in India. It will be played across 10 venues in India between October 5 and November 19 making it the biggest ever 50-over World Cup event in history. While last edition's repeat of the final will kick off the proceedings at the Narendra Modi Stadium in Ahmedabad, the host nation India will open their campaign against five-time champions Australia. And the India-Australia fixture drew a telling reaction from former cricketers in Nasser Hussain and Ricky Ponting.
India will play the fifth game of the tournament, opening their campaign against the Aussies at the MA Chidambaram Stadium in Chennai on October 8. It will also be Australia's first game in the tournament. While the fixture gave the former England captain a reminder of the World Test Championship final where India had lost by 209 runs, Ponting opined on the conditions in Chennai and who could head into the contest as favourites.
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Speaking to ICC in a promo video shared on their website as the World Cup schedule was announced with 100 days left for the tournament, the the legendary cricketers previewed the all-important opener for the two teams.
“It’d be a great spectacle that’s one thing I do know, what a great opening game for Australia to be able to play the host nation in a venue like Chennai," said Ponting. “The upgrade of the stadium is awesome, we know what we can expect from the wicket there, it’s probably be a little bit on the slower side and probably there’s going to be a bit of spin. But the Australians will have the time to get there and get prepared for that conditions wise they’d favour India but Australia have got a very proud record of white-ball cricket in the subcontinent so I’m sure they’ll probably go into that game very confident."
Hussain, on the other hand, backed the two sides to head to the knockout stage as well.
“Massive occasion, two brilliant sides, India the hosts against Australia, maybe a bit of paycheck for the WTC final, these two sides will be there I reckon in the knockout stages, a great venue to have the two of the biggest names in world cricket," said Hussain.
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