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World Cup waiting game in storm-hit Brisbane

Brisbane: Organisers will delay as long as possible a decision on whether or not Saturday`s World Cup match between Australia and Bangladesh at storm-battered Brisbane will go-ahead once the devastation from Tropical Cyclone Marcia has been assessed.

Marcia, a category five tempest, slammed into the Queensland coast just after 2200 GMT Thursday with its landfall coming just hours after a second big storm -- Cyclone Lam -- hit further north in Australia.

The deluge is expected to swamp the city`s famed Gabba ground and an International Cricket Council statement issued Friday said: "ICC Cricket World Cup 2015 organisers are working closely with authorities in Queensland regarding tomorrow`s match between Australia and Bangladesh given the extreme weather situation in the State and the forecasts for ongoing rain in Brisbane

"Our thoughts are with the people affected. However as there is no reserve day for pool matches, we will continue to prepare in the hope that the match can go ahead," the statement from the global governing body added.

"The ICC match officials will make a decision on the match tomorrow (Saturday) based on conditions at the time.

"The match can still go ahead with a delayed start if necessary. A match can be successfully completed if each side has a minimum of 20 overs, which means that it is still possible to achieve a result with a start after the scheduled innings break."

If the Pool A match is called off, a no-result will be declared and the teams awarded a point apiece.

Meanwhile, Gabba head groundsman Kevin Mitchell admitted he wasn`t optimistic that the game, set for a 0330 GMT start, would go ahead.

"Obviously with the forecast of the cyclone moving down the coast it doesn`t look that great. You are always hopeful but it is not promising," Mitchell told the Australian Associated Press.

He added it could take hours to prepare the field -- if the torrential rain stopped.

"The way the system is tracking it will be north of Brisbane around lunch time tomorrow (Saturday)," he said.

"And considering it is a wide system, it will be a long time to go until it eases."

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