Twenty20 World Cup: UAE stadiums to be at 70% capacity as Oman recovers from cyclone | Cricket News
Stadiums in the United Arab Emirates (UAE) will operate at 70% capacity for the Twenty20 World Cup, although conditions in Oman – where the preliminary rounds are to be played – have yet to be fully assessed following a cyclone .
Tropical Cyclone Shaheen hit coastal areas of Oman, including the capital Muscat, on Sunday just a week before the tournament’s preliminary round matches began on October 10.
Some 3,000 fans are believed to be staying at Al Amerat Stadium in Muscat, the International Cricket Council (ICC) said on Sunday, although the cyclone left the streets of the Omani capital underwater, caused evacuations from coastal areas and delayed flights to and outside the country.
The 16-team tournament has been moved to the Gulf states following a wave of COVID-19 infections in India, but the Indian Cricket Council (BCCI) remains the host of the event.
The ICC said she and BCCI have worked closely with host authorities to ensure fans are welcomed in a safe environment and that COVID-19 protocols are enforced at all venues.
“The T20 World Cup is the biggest sporting event held in the region and it will be the biggest cricket world event since the pandemic with fans in the stadiums,” the ICC said.
“In the United Arab Emirates, all venues will operate at around 70% of their maximum seating capacity, while Abu Dhabi has also introduced new ‘pods’ socially distanced from up to four spectators on their grass mounds east and west, ”he said.
Dubai, which hosts matches including the final on November 14, and Sharjah are the other two venues for the UAE.
The United Arab Emirates are currently hosting the Indian Premier League (IPL) with reduced capacity fans.
England begin their T20 World Cup campaign on 23 October against defending champions West Indies and also share a squad with Australia, South Africa and two first-round qualifiers.
They will fly to Oman on Monday where they will complete a mandatory quarantine period before heading to their tournament base in Dubai next Saturday.
Watch the Twenty20 World Cup live on Sky Sports from October 18.