Dhaka: International Cricket Council (ICC) president Sharad Pawar said Thursday that the World Cup will strengthen bonds between the cricket playing nations.
Speaking at the opening ceremony of the World Cup at the Bangabandhu National Stadium, Pawar said Thursday will go down as a "historic day" as Bangladesh, India and Sri Lanka host the 10th World Cup.
"Today is a historic day when the people of Bangladesh join India and Sri Lanka together to host the ICC Cricket World Cup, and make this tournament the most memorable yet. Tonight we welcome the captains of the world`s top 14 teams to the opening ceremony of the World Cup. One of these captains before us tonight will stand in the magnificent new Wankhede Stadium in Mumbai on April 2 and receive the World Cup trophy. On behalf of the ICC, I wish you all the very best of luck," he said.
Pawar, who is India`s agriculture minister, said that the World Cup provides the stage on which players have the rare opportunity to create legend and to write their own chapter in cricketing history.
"The greatest cricketers in the world will grace this event and I am sure that their ability, whether with bat or ball, will provide excitement and enjoyment for all cricket lovers. To the players and the match officials we wish you good fortune and look forward to some excellent performances," added Pawar.
Pawar thanked Bangladesh Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina, India Prime Minister Manmohan Singh and also the Sri Lankan president Mahinda Rajapaksa for their great support and cooperation.