ICC Cricket WC 2023 likely to start from Oct 5 onwards, final scheduled in Ahmedabad

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MUMBAI: The upcoming 2023 ICC Cricket World Cup, which will be hosted by India for the first time in its entirety, is likely to start from October 5 and will end on November 19, with the final scheduled to be at the Narendra Modi Stadium in Ahmedabad, which is the world’s largest cricket stadium.

As per ESPNCricinfo, the Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) has also shortlisted at least a dozen venues for the marquee cricketing event, comprising Bengaluru, Chennai, Delhi, Dharamsala, Guwahati, Hyderabad, Kolkata, Lucknow, Indore, Rajkot and Mumbai. The tournament will witness a total of 48 matches across 46 days.

BCCI has however, not specified any venues for matches yet and the cities which will host warm-up matches. This is due to the complications arising due to the receding of monsoon season at different times in different parts of the country.

Usually, ICC announced World Cup schedules year in advance at least, but BCCI is also waiting for necessary clearances from the Indian government.

These include tax exemption and getting visa clearance for the Pakistan team, which has not played a bilateral series against India since 2013. Both teams have only played at ICC events since then.

At ICC’s quarterly meetings last weekends in Dubai, BCCI learned to have assured the global body of the sport that Pakistan teams’ visas will be cleared by the Indian government.

On the tax exemption issue, BCCI is expected to provide an update to ICC on exact position of the government on the matter. The tax exemption has been a part of the host agreement that BCCI signed with ICC in 2014. Three events were given to India, the 2016 ICC T20 World Cup, the 2018

Champions Trophy (later changed to the 2021 T20 World Cup, which was held in UAE and Oman due to COVID-19) and the 2023 50-over World Cup.

As per the agreement, the BCCI was “obligated” to help out the ICC (and all its commercial partners involved in the tournament) in securing tax waivers.

Last year, ICC was informed by Indian tax authorities that it would be charged a 20 per cent tax order (excluding surcharges) for its broadcast revenue from the 2023 World Cup.

In a note distributed to its members-state associations, BCCI said that any tax “incurred” by ICC would be adjusted against India’s board revenues from ICC central revenue pool.

In the note, the BCCI listed the ICC’s estimated broadcasting income from the 2023 World Cup at USD 533.29 million. It said that the “financial impact” it would suffer for a 10.92 per cent tax order would be around UDS 58.23 million (the BCCI’s note listed the figure as USD 52.23 million, which appears to be an error given the percentages listed). That would more than double to roughly USD 116.47 million if the tax component were to be 21.84 per, as desired by tax authorities in India. (ANI)

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