Legends to play in Toronto
Pakistan Legends will play India Legends in a cricket match at the Rogers Centre, Toronto, Ontario on March 3, 2007. This match comes one week ahead of the Cricket World Cup which is taking place in the West Indies. The event seeks to bring "communicty togetherness through sports and entertainment". The event is being presented by M+D Community Corp.in partnership with the Heart and Stroke Foundation and the Canadian Cricket Association.
There will be a 50-overs per side match. Wasim Akram is to captain the Pakistan side, and Mohammad Azharuddin, India. Those present at the Media Conference, held at the Rogers Centre (Monday, October 16) were told the game will be seriously contested. There will be a festival atmosphere, with the event having traditional dancers before the game and in the interval between innings, a South Asian rock band will entertain. The organizers and the Canadian Cricket Association President, Mr Ben Sennik, hope for a capacity crowd of 60,000.
The event was applauded as a great opportunity to be seen in Canada at the Rogers Centre. Canada holds the record attendance for a cricket match in the ICC Americas Region, thanks to the 1989 United Way Cricket Match at the then Skydome (now Rogers Centre). Different figures are quoted for the attendance at that match - publicity at the time reported about 43,000. Canada will retain the record crowd figure for cricket in the Americas even after the Cricket World Cup is played in the West Indies next March and April.
Ontario Minister of Immigration and Citizenship Mike Colle is delighted to see this game go ahead. He spoke of visiting St Lucia to see Canada in the World Cup. He hoped the Legends game would attract people without a cricketing heritage as well as, obviously, cricket lovers. Comparisons were drawn between Canadians love for (ice) hockey and people from major cricket-playing nations passion and love for the magic of cricket. A video greeting was given by Mudassar Nazar, a former Pakistani Test Player, who is designated as organizer for his country's side.