India's capital New Delhi's air quality is in the "severe" category right now but India's stand-in captain Rohit Sharma on Thursday said he doesn't expect any pollution-related problem during the first T20 International against Bangladesh here on November 3.
On a day when Bangladesh batsman Liton Das was briefly seen wearing a face mask to beat the toxic air pollution during his team's first training session at the Feroz Shah Kotla, Rohit sought to downplay concerns.
"I have just landed and haven't had time to assess. As far as I know, the game is to be played on November 3 and will be played," Rohit, who will lead the side in the three-match series in the absence of a rested Virat Kohli, said at an event here.
"We didn't have any problem when we played the Test match here (against Sri Lanka). We are not aware of the exact discussion and I haven't had any problem," he added.
The game Rohit was referring to took place in 2017 when the visiting Sri Lankan players sported face masks during the third Test. The play was also halted for about 20 minutes due to haze and the "very poor" air quality.
Meanwhile, The BCCI has already made it clear that the match will go ahead as scheduled despite the issue of air quality being raised by cricketer-turned-politician Gautam Gambhir, celebrities like Dia Mirza and organizations such as 'Care for Air' and 'My Right to Breathe'.
BCCI President Sourav Ganguly Said, the Kotla T20I will go ahead as scheduled as there is little time to re-arrange, "It's too late to do anything, because a lot of preparations go into matches tickets, crowds everything… So it's not possible to cancel things at the last minute. Fingers crossed," the BCCI president said. "I hope the match gets through. I spoke to the DDCA and they are confident to get through it. I know post-Diwali it's a bit tough in the North. As I said, fingers crossed. It's too late to change. I hope everything goes fine."
But the BCCI chief asked the organizers to be more cautious in the future. "In the future, when we schedule, especially in the northern part of India during the winter, we will have to be a little bit more practical," Ganguly told reporters at Eden Gardens.
Delhi's air quality, at this time of the year, remains either poor or severe owing to Diwali and stubble burning in the neighboring states of Punjab and Haryana.
On Thursday, at the start of Bangladesh's training, Liton, for a period of 10 minutes, wore a face mask. But he did not wear any mask when he batted at the nets.