CRICKET

ICC announces World Cup schedule; 14 teams in 2027 And 2031

ICC World Cup, Six Sports

On Tuesday, the International Cricket Council (ICC) announced the fixture for men’s global cricket events for the period 2024-2031 especially the World Cup. The 2027 and 2031 ODI fixtures will have 54 matches each, whereas the four shorter-form tournaments will be a 55-match event every two years.

A surprise by ICC is the re-introduction of the Champions Trophy in 2025 and 2029. Also known as the ‘mini world cup’, the tournament will be an eight-team event.

ICC to allow more teams in World Cup

Major changes include the expansion of the number of teams for the upcoming ICC world cups. The 2027 and 2031 ODI World Cups will have 14 teams, unlike the current 10. The four T20 World Cup tournaments in 2024, 2026, 2028, and 2030 will be expanded to include 20 teams, ICC’s official press release said.

ICC World Cup, Six Sports

The decision is expected to increase the competition, while also boosting the global growth of cricket as more countries will get to feature in the World Cups.

The World Test Championship Finals will take place in 2025, 2027, 2029 and 2031. As is known, the inaugural World Test Championship Final will be played between India and New Zealand from June 18-22 at Ageas Bowl, Southampton, England.

New qualification procedure to be introduced in World Cup

Coming back to the ODI World Cups, the 14-team events in 2027 and 2031 will have two groups of seven teams each with top three teams from each group entering the Super Six stage. From there, four teams will progress to the semi-finals, followed by the final. This format was last used in the 2003 ODI World Cup.

For the T20 global events from 2024, 20 teams will be segregated in four groups of five, followed by Super Eight stage, and then the semi-finals and the title game.

Meanwhile, the process for selecting hosts will be now decided by the ICC Board instead of the existing open bidding route. The apex global cricket body said the process will start this month, and the hosts will be announced later in September.

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