Sun, 01 Oct 2023

Doha [Qatar], November 20 (ANI): Vice President Jagdeep Dhankhar arrived at Hamad International Airport in Doha to represent India at the inauguration of the FIFA World Cup in Qatar on Sunday.

Dhankhar is on a two-day visit to Qatar at the invitation of Sheikh Tamim bin Hamad Al Thani, Emir of the State of Qatar. The Ambassador of India to the State of Qatar Deepak Mittal and other senior officials from the ministry of foreign affairs from Qatar's side received the Vice President.

"We are happy and proud that the Vice-President of India has arrived in Qatar to represent India in the inaugural event of the FIFA World Cup. It's a historic moment and reflects the very close ties enjoyed between India and Qatar," said Deepak Mittal, Ambassador of India to Qatar.

The Vice President's visit would be an opportunity to join a close and friendly country Qatar as it hosts a major sporting event and also to acknowledge the role played and support extended by Indians in this World Cup.

During his visit, besides attending the inaugural ceremony on November 20, the Vice President will also interact with the members of the Indian community.

32 teams will be eyeing glory in this once-in-four-years football extravaganza.

The teams are hosts Qatar, Ecuador, Senegal, the Netherlands, England, Iran, USA, Wales, Argentina, Saudi Arabia, Mexico, Poland, France, Australia, Denmark, Tunisia, Spain, Costa Rica, Germany, Japan, Belgium, Canada, Morocco, Croatia, Brazil, Serbia, Switzerland, Cameroon, Portugal, Ghana, Uruguay, and South Korea.

France are the defending champions, having won their second title in 2018 after defeating Croatia in the final. They will be aiming to defend their crown against a world-class competition offered by these aforementioned teams.

This marks the first time the Middle East is hosting the event. It is also the first time the World Cup is being held outside the typical June-July window, in order to avoid the desert heat during the summer in Qatar.

Eight stadiums across Qatar will be hosting the 64 matches of this tournament. Qatar and Ecuador will lock horns in the campaign opener from 9:30 PM IST onwards. (ANI)

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