ISLAMABAD: The venues and host cities for the ICC World T20 2020, which will be hosted by Australia, were announced on Tuesday at events throughout the country. The eight host cities are Adelaide, Brisbane, Canberra, Geelong, Hobart, Melbourne, Perth and Sydney. “For the first time, the women’s and men’s competitions will be held as standalone events in the same host country and in the same year. This will give the best female and male cricketers respective opportunities to capture the attention of the country and the world,” said a media release of the ICC. Women’s matches will run from February 21 to March 8, 2020 and the men’s matches will run from October 18 to November 15, 2020. The world’s 10 best women’s teams and 16 best men’s team’s will come to Australia to battle it out for the ultimate prize in T20 cricket. The ICC World T20 will see 13 venues throughout Australia host matches, with both competitions having broad national footprints, meaning as many Australians as possible will have the chance to see the most talented players in the world. Both the women’s and men’s finals will receive equal billing, with both matches taking place at Australia’s biggest stadium, the Melbourne Cricket Ground (MCG). The women’s semi-finals will be hosted on consecutive days at the Sydney Cricket Ground (SCG), while the men’s semi-finals will take place at the SCG and Adelaide Oval. The women’s final will take place on International Women’s Day 2020, Sunday 8 March, with the aim of creating a world-record attendance for a women’s sporting match. David Peever, Chairman of Cricket Australia and the ICC World T20 2020 Local Organising Committee said in s statement: “Australia is extremely privileged to be hosting the ICC World T20 tournaments in 2020. On behalf of Cricket Australia and the Local Organising Committee, I would like to sincerely thank Government at both Federal and State and Territory level, host cities, venues and State and Territory Cricket Associations for their exceptional support, which is so critical for delivering the best possible events in 2020. ICC World T20 2020 provides a unique opportunity to engage the whole community and inspire the next generation to love cricket.” The ICC World T20 2020 takes place against the backdrop of a hugely successful ICC Cricket World Cup 2015, which featured record crowds, broadcast audiences and visitors and the ongoing success of the Women’s and Men’s Big Bash. The ICC is the global governing body for cricket. Representing 104 members, the ICC governs and administrates the game and is responsible for the staging of major international tournaments including the ICC World Cup and Women’s World Cup, ICC Champions Trophy and the ICC Men’s and Women’s World T20. Published in Daily Times, January 31st 2018.