India's next 2019 AFC Asian Cup qualifiers' game against Macau, originally scheduled to be held at the Sree Kanteerava Stadium in Bengaluru on 10th October 2017, has been postponed by a day to the 11th of October.
While the official reason given to the continental governing body by the All India Football Federation (AIFF) was that the stadium would not be available on the initial date, Goal has reliably learnt that the actual reason is entirely different altogether.
The Indian men's cricket team are set to welcome their Australian counterparts for a five-match ODI series this month, which will be followed by a three-game T20I series. The second T20I game is set to be held on 10th of October, the initial date on which India vs Macau game was scheduled.
Though the cricket game is being played in Guwahati, it has forced the postponement of the football game because the broadcasters of both games were not comfortable with the idea of the cricket team and football team playing simultaneously.
With the T20I set for a 7:00 PM IST start, it was sure to overlap with the football fixture. The broadcasters felt that this could bring down the collective viewership and with cricket enjoying prominence, the football game wouldn't get much attention.
A source close to the developments told Goal, "It is a sad state of affairs that an international football match has been pushed back because of the cricket schedule. We can only hope that this does not happen again."
The Asian Football Confederation (AFC) were okay with the idea of shifting the game because of stadium unavailability since the AIFF intimated them at least a month earlier but asked the Indian FA to ensure the new date falls within the FIFA international calendar.
The AFC also asked the AIFF to obtain permission from Macau regarding the change in date and the South-East Asian nation had no problems in playing the game on 11th of October.