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Volume 6 No. 211

Events and Attractions

The Board of Control for Cricket in India "is optimistic about the resumption of India-Pakistan cricketing ties in a neutral venue such as the UAE, but is in no position to put a date on this happening," according to Ahad Awan of PAKISTAN TODAY. Indian Premier League Chair Ranjib Biswal said, "We have had a discussion in the working committee about a proposal from the Pakistan board to host some matches in the UAE, but nothing has been confirmed as yet." The return of Indian cricketers to the UAE for the IPL 2014, "which ended an eight-year drought, is being seen as a precursor to a possible series between the arch-rivals in the UAE." Endorsing the view, BCCI Interim President Sunil Gavaskar said, “I’m certain the success of IPL will make the BCCI look at it in a different way than in the past" (PAKISTAN TODAY, 4/29). In Abu Dhabi, Ahmed Rizvi wrote the UAE is emerging as front-runner to host the Champions League Twenty20 later this year "after impressing Indian cricket officials" with its organization of the IPL. Gavaskar: “We have been absolutely blown away by the crowds that have turned up, even for the 2:30pm games." Gavaskar "lauded the country’s authorities for their support in making the IPL a success and he hinted that the UAE could be rewarded with the Champions League" -- a tournament jointly owned by the BCCI, Cricket Australia and Cricket South Africa. Gavaskar: "It’s not been an easy task to move an event of the scale of the IPL in the short time we had. The authorities and the stadiums have delivered exactly what they promised" (THE NATIONAL, 4/28).

The 2015 Dakar Rally "has not begun, but it is already close to being altered," according to Jaime Martín of MARCA. The earthquake that struck Iquique, Chile on April 1 and impacted the surrounding area has "forced the Chilean government to consider if its planned investment in the event" -- which was nearly €6M in this year's edition -- should instead be invested in the affected areas. Chilean President Michelle Bachelet "prefers to donate this sum" to help the cities of Iquique and Valparaíso. The organizers of the Dakar Rally "are seeking alternatives to the route that was presented in Paris and it appears that the race will only be held in Argentina and Bolivia" (MARCA, 4/29). OLE reported Chile's decision "can be carried out without a problem because the contract between Chile and race organizer ASO was not signed and there is only a verbal agreement" (OLE, 4/29).

The tournament directors of the five German ATP events "have agreed to a collaboration," according to the SID. The five tournament directors, Michael Stich (Hamburg), Edwin Weindorfer (Stuttgart), Horst Erpenbeck (Halle), Dietloff von Arnim (Dusseldorf) and Michael Mronz (Munich), "met during the BMW Open in Munich to announce the start of the collaboration." Von Arnim, who oversees the Dusseldorf Open together with former player Rainer Schüttler, said, "We can learn a lot from each other." Weindorfer explained that the tournaments "could use synergy in terms of purchase, TV marketing, presence toward the ATP and 'for one or the other player acquisition.'" There are "also talks about a collaborative tournament series" (SID, 4/29).

The French Tennis Federation said on Monday that "France will play its Davis Cup semi-final against holders Czech Republic at Roland Garros." France, which beat Germany in the quarterfinals, has opted to play the Sept. 12-14 tie "on the Philippe Chatrier clay court at Roland Garros" for the first time since '02. Switzerland and Italy "are contesting the other semi-final" (REUTERS, 4/28). ... The Caribbean Football Union’s inaugural CFU Women’s Caribbean Cup will take place in six countries: Antigua, Dominican Republic, Turks and Caicos Islands, Haiti and Puerto Rico, before advancing to the final round to meet host Trinidad (CFU). ... A top Indonesian sports official on Tuesday confirmed that "the country will officially express readiness to host the 18th Asian Games in 2019 during the visit of the Olympic Council of Asia" on Monday (XINHUA, 4/29). ... The Sports Authority of Thailand on Monday said that Phuket "is ready to host the Asian Beach Games in November." The 200-day countdown to the Nov. 14-23 tournament began Monday at Patong Beach. With 26 sports and 168 gold medals up for grabs, "the fourth Asian Beach Games will be held at six venues" (BANGKOK POST, 4/29). ... Six more sports "were added to the 2015 SEA Games program" when the SEA Games Federation Council met on Tuesday morning at Raffles City Convention Centre. The six newly endorsed sports "are rowing, equestrian, boxing, floorball, pentaque, and volleyball." They "join the original list of 30 sports drawn up last year at the Myanmar SEA Games." In all, 36 sports -- and 402 events -- "will feature at next June's Singapore SEA Games" (STRAITS TIMES, 4/29).