The Asia Cup 2023 has undergone a significant change in its venue, moving from Colombo to Hambantota, a coastal town in Southern Sri Lanka. This decision stems from concerns about prevailing weather conditions in Sri Lanka, particularly high chances of rain in Colombo over the next 10 days. All participating teams have been informed of this change, with the Asian Cricket Council (ACC) expected to make an official announcement soon.
Teams that have completed their last league games in Pakistan will now travel to Hambantota. For instance, the Indian team will relocate from Pallekele. While there was consideration given to hosting matches in the UAE, concerns about extreme heat and player health led to this option being discarded, especially with the World Cup approaching.
Hambantota was chosen as the new venue due to more favorable weather patterns, with a lower probability of rain (around 20 percent). Despite the logistical challenges posed by this venue change, the ACC has worked diligently to make necessary arrangements.
Criticism has arisen, with Najam Sethi questioning the ACC’s decision and suggesting a split between Pakistan and the UAE for hosting matches. However, those involved in the tournament argue that the ACC deserves credit for its swift adaptation to the circumstances, emphasizing the need for flexibility given the challenges posed by weather and scheduling.