March 19, 2008

World Cup

Associates lose out in World Cup revamp

Martin Williamson

As widely expected, the ICC executive board approved proposals to reduce the number of Associates participating at the 2011 World Cup from six to four.

This was done, so the ICC claimed, to reduce the length of an event which many considered to be too bloated in 2007 from 47 days to 38.

The ICC's 10 Full Members automatically qualify and they will be joined by the top four teams from next years World Cup Qualifiers in Dubai. As thing stands, this means that Ireland have to qualify for a tournament they reached the Super Sixes at last time, while Zimbabwe, who are below them in the official ICC One-Day Rankings, do not.

Alternative proposals, including one which would have involved a pre-qualifying tournament featuring the top six Associates as well as Bangladesh and Zimbabwe, were earlier rejected by the ICC's chief executives committee.

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Martin Williamson is executive editor of ESPNcricinfo and managing editor of ESPN Digital Media in Europe, the Middle East and Africa

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Posted by kaiser on (March 20, 2008, 19:40 GMT)

If ICC could only increase the number of teams for Twenty20 WC then that would definitely do the justice to the Associates. To be honest, that is the only format in which Associates can consistently give the big guns some trouble, and a format like 2020 is bound to become successful in Associate and other non-cricket playing countries.

We have to agree with the harsh reality that 50 over games and World Cup would never become successful in part of the world where cricket is not popular, and Associates calibre and craze is no where near the top 10. Once in a blue moon they might shock us, but in the long term I highly doubt it. Though in 2020 you could certainly expect regular shocks and horror of Associates defeating and kicking out biggies.

Posted by kaiser on (March 20, 2008, 19:40 GMT)

If ICC could only increase the number of teams for Twenty20 WC then that would definitely do the justice to the Associates. To be honest, that is the only format in which Associates can consistently give the big guns some trouble, and a format like 2020 is bound to become successful in Associate and other non-cricket playing countries.

We have to agree with the harsh reality that 50 over games and World Cup would never become successful in part of the world where cricket is not popular, and Associates calibre and craze is no where near the top 10. Once in a blue moon they might shock us, but in the long term I highly doubt it. Though in 2020 you could certainly expect regular shocks and horror of Associates defeating and kicking out biggies.

Posted by Tunaari on (March 20, 2008, 6:03 GMT)

World Cup is now in the hands of business men who are looking to make money. They dont care about cricket. They just want to make money and if the repeat of last World Cup happens then they cannot make the millions they planned to make. They already have those Gambling rings going in those areas. ICC is doing more harm then good. I still cant understand why cricket is not in Olympics. If they can change the game anyway they like to make money then they can make a few more to include it in Olympics. But only amateurs should be allowed to play.

Posted by fromefrog on (March 19, 2008, 22:50 GMT)

to paraphrase Sir Terry "Crickets going to hell in a handcart". i wouldn't let the ICC run a bath. i for one am of the impression that even 10 nations might be 3 or 4 to many for certain sections of the ICC.

Posted by Cuen Lucas on (March 19, 2008, 15:21 GMT)

"Its a BLACK DAY in crickets history."

Well put Binodbikash, it's this type of arrogance and greed that will undermine the development of cricket on a global scale.

Does the ICC care? Doubt it, so long as their masters (BCCI) are happy, then the ICC isn't worried, forget about their mission and mandate, forget about the love of the game. This is proof of that.

Like it or not, the fact is that the ONLY way associate players will improve the standard of their game is to play against the world's best, and the one sided game, though a reality, are more of a "teething pain", than a permanent situation.

Meanwhile other sports continue to grow and prosper around the world, but cricket is delighted with it's 10 top flight teams.

Posted by Binodbikash/ Scotland on (March 19, 2008, 12:54 GMT)

Its a BLACK DAY in crickets history. The game is centralised to Full members only now. Its just ICC being BCCIs' pet. BCCI wants to centralise cricket only to India. This will do nothing good to cricket. Nobody will see Leverock or Davision choosing cricket. Many Tikolos and van Roschete will never be born. I feel sorry for the cricketers and fans of Associate Nations.

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ABOUT THE AUTHOR

Martin Williamson
Executive editor Martin Williamson joined the Wisden website in its planning stages in 2001 after failing to make his millions in the internet boom when managing editor of Sportal. Before that he was in charge of Sky Sports Online and helped launch and run Sky News Online. With a preference for all things old (except his wife and children), he has recently confounded colleagues by displaying an uncharacteristic fondness for Twenty20 cricket. His enthusiasm for the game is sadly not matched by his ability, but he remains convinced that he might be a late developer and perseveres in the hope of an England call-up with his middle-order batting and non-spinning offbreaks. He is now managing editor of ESPN EMEA Digital Group as well as his Cricinfo responsibilities.

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