India will take on arch-rivals Pakistan in the much-awaited group stage ICC T20 World Cup opener in Dubai on October 24, the International Cricket Council confirmed on Tuesday.
The tournament will begin with the Round 1 Group B encounter between hosts Oman and Papua New Guinea on October 17, with Scotland and Bangladesh, the other teams in Group B, clashing in an evening match.
Ireland, Netherlands, Sri Lanka and Namibia -- making up Group A -- will be in action in Abu Dhabi the next day, with Round 1 matches running till October 22. The top two teams in each group will proceed to the Super12 stage of the tournament, beginning on October 23.
The Super12 stage -- the second round of the tournament -- will get underway in Abu Dhabi on October 23, with the Group 1 contest between Australia and South Africa. This will be followed up with an evening clash between England and West Indies in Dubai.
Old rivals England and Australia will lock horns in Dubai on October 30. The group will conclude on November 6 with matches between Australia and West Indies in Abu Dhabi, and England and South Africa in Sharjah.
Group 2 will commence with a heavyweight clash between India and Pakistan in Dubai on October 24. Pakistan then take on New Zealand in Sharjah on October 26, in a tough start for the 2009 champions. Afghanistan begins its campaign on October 25 at Sharjah, taking on the winners of Group B from the first round.
The group will conclude on November 8, with India taking on the second-placed Round 1 qualifier from Group A. The first semifinal will be held in Abu Dhabi on November 10, while the second semifinal will be hosted by Dubai on November 11. Both semifinals have reserve days. The final of the tournament will take place in Dubai on November 14, with November 15 acting as the reserve day.