Anthony Albanese says he’s honoured by the effort his Indian counterpart has put in to his visit, which has included a ride on a chariot before a huge cricket-loving crowd.
As part of a four day business trip to the country, the Prime Minister joined Narendra Modi in opening the fourth cricket Test in Ahmedabad on Thursday afternoon at the stadium named in the Indian leader’s honour.
The two prime ministers did a lap of honour in a chariot before the game, in a stadium complete with hundreds of posters and billboards featuring photos of them both.
“It’s a highlight of my life being here today,” Mr Albanese said before entering the stadium, said to be the biggest in the world.
Prime Minister Anthony Albanese and Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi did a lap of honour during day one of the fourth test match in the India/Australia series. Picture: Robert Cianflone/Getty ImagesMr Albanese said it was ‘an honour’. Picture: Robert Cianflone/Getty Images
Earlier, in a quick press conference with journalists, Mr Albanese was asked how he felt seeing “hundreds” of billboards with his face on them around the streets.
“It’s hard not to have noticed them, yes,” he said.
“I’m very honoured – not for myself, for Australia.
“It says how valued the relationship with Australia is that the government of India and Prime Minister Modi have put such a major effort into making us feel so welcome.”
Mr Albanese said cricket was a cornerstone of the two countries’ relationship. Picture: Robert Cianflone/Getty ImagesMr Albanese greeted Australian captain Steve Smith ahead of the match. Picture: Robert Cianflone/Getty Images)
Speaking about the cricket, Mr Albanese said the two countries had a long and proud relationship and were celebrating 75 years of Test cricket this year.
“It will be a real opportunity to once again cement those relations,” he said.
“I know so many Australians have travelled to India, just like so many back home will be watching on TV, cheering on the Australian cricket team during this test.
From Ahmedabad, Mr Albanese will travel to Mumbai and then Deli.
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