South Africa, Pakistan and Sri Lanka will take part in the first-ever limited-overs tournament to be played in the North African nation of Morocco in August, organisers said on Thursday.
The $250,000 triangular, to be played from August 12 to 21, will make the Moroccon city of Tangiers the latest stop on the growing international cricket calendar.
A $25-million cricket facility has been constructed at Tangiers by the Cricketers Benefit Fund Series (CBFS), organisers of cricket internationals in Sharjah, United Arab Emirates.
Officials from the International Cricket Council (ICC) are scheduled to inspect the new stadium in June. “We are confident the ICC will find the facilities first-rate,” a CBFS official told AFP by phone from Sharjah.
“We have worked very hard to create a good cricket facility. The weather is great during July to September, which is usually the off-season elsewhere except in England. “Tangiers has the potential to become a regular venue, like Sharjah,” the official said.
Sharjah, promoted by a cricket-loving businessman from the UAE, Abdulrehman Bukhatir, has hosted more one-day internationals than any venue in the world since the first official match was played there in 1984.
Cricket was introduced in Morocco in 1991 and received a big boost after the construction of a cricket stadium in Tangiers in 1999.
Former Indian Test star Mohinder Amarnath, hired by the CBFS to teach cricket to youngsters in Morocco, said Tangiers “was a great place to hold international matches.”
“There is already a lot of interest in the game among the locals, who play tournaments regularly,” he said.