After a delay in getting their visas, the Pakistan Cricket team finally reached Hyderabad on Wednesday night for the ICC Men's ODI World Cup 2023 in India. Pakistan team including skipper Babar Azam, wicketkeeper-batter Mohammad Rizwan, Shaheen Shah Afridi, and Iftikhar Ahmed among others reacted to India's hospitality upon their arrival at Hyderabad airport.
Earlier, Pakistan had to cancel their two-day team bonding retreat in Dubai as they faced a delay in receiving their visas. Pakistan were scheduled to travel to Dubai on September 25 before traveling to India on Wednesday, however, the delay in visas led them to cancel their Dubai trip as they left Lahore on September 26 and reached Hyderabad on September 27.
Pakistan team received a warm welcome from the Indian fans on their arrival at the Rajiv Gandhi International Airport in Hyderabad amid tight security. Skipper Babar Azam, Shaheen Shah Afridi, and Mohammad Rizwan took to their Instagram handles and posted a story praising the Indian hospitality.
Babar Azam wrote, "Overwhelmed with the love and support here in Hyderabad." Shaheen Afridi wrote, "Great Welcome thus far!" Mohammad Rizwan also took to Instagram and wrote, "Amazing reception from the people here. Everything was super smooth. Looking forward to the next 1.5 months."
Apart from them, Iftikhar Ahmed and Hasan Ali also took to social media to praise the Indian fans and their hospitality. Hasan Ali, who was included in the team after Naseem Shah's injury, posted a video on X and wrote, "Team Pakistan receiving a wonderful welcome in Hyderabad, India. Lovely to see I am the Part of This Team ❤️"
Ahead of the World Cup, the Men in Green are scheduled to face 2019 World Cup runners-up New Zealand in a warm-up game on Friday, September 29 followed by their second warm-up game against Australia on October 3. Both the warm-up games will take place at the Rajiv Gandhi International Stadium in Hyderabad while Pakistan will kick off their World Cup campaign against the Netherlands on October 6 at the same venue.