India, Bangladesh to tour Sri Lanka in March

Fans may have had enough of cricket between India and Sri Lanka but the two sides are set to meet yet again in a tri-series involving Bangladesh as well in March next year. The Islanders will be the hosts of the triangular series which is set to take place in from March 8 to 20.

The announcement of the tournament was made during a joint press conference attended by the heads of the participating countries – India, Sri Lanka and Bangladesh.

All three teams will play two league matches each against one another and the best two will then lock horns in the final which will be played on March 20. There is just one venue which has been booked for the entire series – R Premadasa Stadium in Colombo.

Post announcement of the tri-series schedule, BCCI CEO Rahul Johri said: “We are privileged to be a part of Sri Lanka’s 70th year celebrations, there is no closer friend to the BCCI than Sri Lanka [and Bangladesh] and when Mr. Sumathipala first floated this invitation, there was almost instant agreement that the Indian Team would participate for this reason.”

The tri-nation series is being called as Nidahas Trophy, in reference to Sri Lanka’s 70 years of independence. It is not the first time such a tournament has been scheduled. Earlier, it was played in 1998, in celebration of Sri Lanka’s 50 years of independence and at the same time it also marked Sri Lanka cricket board’s 50 years of inception.

Bangladesh Cricket Board President, Nazmul Hassan Papon, also gave his views on tri-series  and said: “The support and contribution of Sri Lanka [and India] in Bangladesh’s cricketing journey could not be overemphasized, and that this invitation was a clear testament to what a good friend Sri Lanka has been to Bangladesh’s Cricket. This Tournament too, would no doubt continue to strengthen the bonds between the 3 nations.”

Speaking of the occasion, SL President Thilanga Sumathipala, said: “70 years is a long journey, and one that needs to be commemorated and celebrated. We are happy that our closest neighbours, who share more or less the same journey of independence are joining us in this celebration, which we believe will be a milestone and an augur of the great things to come in the annals of cricket.”

All Nidahas Trophy 2018 matches will be night matches and will have a total of 7 T20Is. (Courtesy Times Now)

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