UAE keen to host major ICC tournaments

Published: Wednesday, May 4, 2005, 23:53 [IST]
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Abu Dhabi:Even though the allegations of match-fixing cloud hover over the future of cricket in Sharjah, Cricketers' Benefit Fund Series (CBFS) chief Abdul Rehman Bukhatir said the United Arab Emirates (UAE) was keen to host a major International Cricket Council (ICC) event in near future.

With Abu Dhabi unveiling its Zayed Stadium by hosting a triangular tournament, Bukhatir said the country could now hope to see some top cricketing action by hosting an event like the Champions Trophy.

"It is fantastic that such a fine stadium has come up here. Now one more stadium is coming up in Dubai. After that we can think of hosting an event like the Champions Trophy," he said.

Bukhatir rubbished claims that Sharjah was a match-fixing hub and said nothing could stop cricket from being held there.

"It's all non-sense, right from the beginning. Some people started it and I don't know the reason behind doing so. It was never there.

"Cricket has flourished in UAE. Nothing can stop us from holding cricket there. It does not matter whether big teams come or not," he said.

Bukhatir seemed quite excited over the game spreading to new corners in the country. He said with stadiums coming up, locals could play the game at the highest level.

"The joy is there, seeing one more stadiums coming up. It's always a good feeling seeing people enjoying the game," he said.

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