Last week, the International Cricket Council (ICC), in a statement, cricket qualifiers for next year’s women’s World Cup and the 2022 Under-19 World Cup, both due to take place in Sri Lanka between 3 and 19 July, have been postponed as the world continues its battle to coronavirus pandemic. The Women’s World Cup is in New Zealand in February and March of 2021.
“In light of the continuing travel restrictions, global health concerns and government and public health authority advice we have decided to postpone two further upcoming qualifying events due to the Covid-19 pandemic. The Women’s Cricket World Cup Qualifier and the Europe qualifier to the U19 Cricket World Cup 2022 have both been impacted,” said Chris Tetley, ICC head of events.
The ICC has not set a new date for the postponed 10-team tournament that would have determined the final three hopefuls into next year’s 50-over World Cup in New Zealand, when England will defend the title they won three years ago. “Our priority during this difficult period is to protect the well-being of players, coaches, officials, fans and the whole cricket community,” Tetley added.
Meanwhile, the start of the pathway to the ICC U19 Cricket World Cup 2022 was scheduled to begin with the European Regional Qualifier in Denmark between 24 and 30 July. “We will work in partnership with the Members to find an appropriate window to reschedule these events as soon as is safe and practical to do so,” the statement finished.
Earlier, the ICC postponed all qualifiers for next year’s T20 World Cup and the 2023 50-over World Cup. The Africa event due to take place in Tanzania between 7 and 14 August and the Asia event between 1 and 9 December, the two remaining ICC U19 Cricket World Cup Regional Qualifier Division 2 events are being monitored, while the Division 1 events in all five regions are scheduled to take place in 2021.
Meanwhile, cricket Australia will be holding a teleconference with the ICC to discuss the fate of the T20 World Cup. CA is scheduled to host T20 World Cup from October 18 to November 15. However, with the world currently combatting the coronavirus pandemic put a halt on all the sporting events across the globe, the event is likely to be moved in the wake of the health crisis.
Last month, the ICC had hosted a Chief Executive’s Committee meeting. In that meeting ICC said that “three options have been shortlisted”. The first is to stick to the original Oct-Nov window and the second is to the tournament in Feb-March next year. The third that was zeroed in on is to stage the tournament in 2022,” one of the representatives, who were part of the meeting, told the press.
If eventually the T20 World Cup is postponed and the BCCI gets an opportunity to organise the IPL in October-November, participation of overseas players might not be a problem. Although the Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) President Sourav Ganguly was pessimistic about the start date of the IPL, franchise officials are hopeful in its return this year
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