Bangladesh declares World Cup holiday

Updated: 14 March 2011 13:47 IST

People in Chittagong were given the day off on Monday to watch Bangladesh play the Netherlands in their crucial World Cup Group B clash.

Chittagong:

People in Chittagong were given the day off on Monday to watch Bangladesh play the Netherlands in their crucial World Cup Group B clash.

Offices and schools were shut in the port city as a sell-out crowd of 18,000 jammed the Zahur Ahmed Chowdhury stadium for the game as Bangladesh continue their push for the quarterfinals.

Three of the four previous matches hosted by Bangladesh in Dhaka and Chittagong fell on Fridays, a weekly holiday in the country.

Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina said before the tournament began that a local holiday would be declared if a World Cup match were played on a working day.

"The idea of giving a holiday is good because it helps us to control traffic on roads and make it smooth for spectators," Chittagong police chief Z.A. Morshed told AFP.

Bangladesh's last league match against South Africa is scheduled in Dhaka on Saturday, and workers and pupils are set to enjoy another day off.

Two quarterfinals will be held in Bangladesh, on March 23 (Wednesday) and March 25 (Friday).

Bangladesh is hosting cricket's premier tournament for the first time with India and Sri Lanka. All the five matches so far have attracted full houses.

Topics : Cricket Bangladesh ICC World Cup, 2011
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