Delhi, the national capital of India, has never been known for having clean air. But, when the residents of the city get possessed by the Diwali fervour, Delhi has a tendency of becoming a gas chamber, given its pollution levels. And, this Diwali has been no different.
With the weather conditions deteriorating and the Air Quality Index (AQI) reaching 'severe+' level on 1st October, the touring Bangladesh cricket team faces an uphill battle, of not only successfully negating the challenge posed by the Indian side, but also the hazardous air which had Sri Lankan cricketers vomiting two years ago.
Calls from all quarters have grown over concerns of holding the T20I under such unforgiving conditions, but Bangladesh coach Russell Domingo remains unperturbed. The 45-year-old has admitted that the conditions are not ideal in the national capital, where the two teams are scheduled to lock horns in the first T20I on 3rd November, but said it was the same for both teams and they have got to deal with it.November 1, 2019
"The weather has been magnificent. It's not too hot. There's no breeze. But not obviously perfect with the smog. But it's the same for both the teams. It's not perfect, not ideal. But we are not really complaining about it," Domingo told reporters at the Arun Jaitley Stadium, the venue for the first T20I of the three-match series," Domingo told reporters at the venue for 1st T20I.
"We have got to make sure that we prepare as well as possible. We obviously have some scratchy eyes, some sore throats but it's been okay. Nobody is sick or dying. We don't want to be in such weather outside in the field for six or seven hours. Three hours a game we are playing and three hours of practice session," he added.November 1, 2019
While the Bangladeshi cricketers were spotted wearing anti-pollution masks during their recent training sessions, coach Domingo said that no special plans or arrangements have been made by them for the players to tackle the troubling weather conditions in Delhi.
On 31st October, stand-in skipper Rohit Sharma said that he didn't face any problems with the weather conditions in the national capital. BCCI President Sourav Ganguly had also made it clear that the match cannot be shifted to another venue at the eleventh hour. However, he did mention that in the future, the board will consider the weather conditions before hosting a match in the North in winters.
While Bangladesh will be missing their star allrounder Shakib Al Hasan, owing to an ICC suspension, the Indian selectors have rested regular skipper Virat Kohli for the limited-overs series. In the absence of Kohli, Rohit will be seen marshalling the troops on the field as they gear up for the three-match T20I series.