Chandigarh hotel turned into fortress as Pak team arrives for World Cup semi-final

March 26th, 2011 - 12:28 pm ICT by ANI  

Chandigarh, Mar 26(ANI): The Pakistan cricket team has finally arrived in India amidst high security cover to play their 2011 World Cup semi-final match against their arch rivals on March 30 in Mohali.

The Pakistan team reached Chandigarh on late Friday afternoon after a brief layover in New Delhi, and were transferred to their hotel, which has been turned into a fortress over security concerns.

Pakistan beat the West Indies by 10 wickets to reach the second semi-final of the ICC World Cup, where they will meet co-hosts India, who ousted defending champions Australia by five wickets on Thursday.

Expectations are high in the cricket-crazy region for a mouth-watering Pakistan-India clash for a slot in the World Cup final match to be held at Mumbai on April 2.

Pakistan will hold their practice session at the Punjab Cricket Association stadium- approximately 12 km from the main city- on Saturday.

The Indian cricket team is also scheduled to reach the semi-final venue on Saturday.

Meanwhile, tight security has been put in and around Hotel Taj in Chandigarh, where both teams will be staying.

“Nearly 1,000 cops have been deployed for the security of the teams and officials,” the Dawn quoted Chandigarh’s SSP (Security) H. S. Doon, as saying.

With a major security threat averted on Thursday, team members and the management have been issued strict guidelines by local officials, and have also been asked to give a four-hour notice before heading out of the hotel.

“We are not taking any chances with the security and even the teams have been asked to strictly adhere to the guidelines,” Doon said, adding, “We also want to ensure that there is no security concern about the place where any team member wants to visit.”

The Mohali stadium has also been sealed and nearly 2,000 cops would be deployed in and around the Punjab Cricket Association (PCA) stadium on the March 30 as part of the foolproof security measures, a Punjab police official said.

According to police sources, adequate security would also be ensured for the Pakistani fans visiting the venue to enjoy the Indo-Pak match. (ANI)

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