September 16, 2010

Associates

Associates anger at World Cup proposals

Martin Williamson

The leading Associate members of the ICC have described the plans for a smaller 50-over World Cup as a glass ceiling that will restrict the growth of the game in their countries, while simultaneously protecting the interests of the full members.

"The challenge will be [to see] how we break through," Chandra Gocool, Cricket Canada's chief executive told ESPNcricinfo.

The ICC's chief executives committee, which includes three representatives from the associate countries (Ireland, Namibia and Hong Kong) in addition to those from the ten full members, has suggested reducing the 50-over tournament to 10 teams from 2015 onwards, while increasing the Twenty20 tournament to 16 teams. The 2011 World Cup in India has 14 teams, including four Associates; a 10-team event would effectively make it much harder for any of them to qualify the next time around.

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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 Sanj on (September 24, 2010, 13:10 GMT)

The solution is very simple: All the Associate countries should break-away from the ICC, form their own World Organization and begin to develop the game in a way which is good for them.

Right now, the ICC is too slow to embrace change and help the developing cricketing nations by these proposals.

The test-playing countries tend to treat the sport at the highest level as some type of closed shop. I want to see one day internationals like Nepal v Ireland, but at this rate, most probably not in my lifetime!

Interesting how the ICC are soooo slow to deal with apparent corruption and yet at the same time slam the door firmly shut with the emerging nations.

Shame.

Posted by Meety on (September 19, 2010, 9:45 GMT)

I think there is a lot to be said for a 16-team T20 WC with the final 4 positions fought out by 10 to 20 countries in a qualifying tournament held just prior to the WC. Teams that participate in the pre-games qualifier event who don't gain entry to the Main Draw can then fight it out for a "Plate" Trophy to see who is the best of the rest.

Posted by Meety on (September 19, 2010, 9:42 GMT)

A 10 team WC could work if... there is a Qualifying tournament just prior. If there are at least 2 maybe 4 places are up for grabs & all the leading non-test playing nations get a go in a round robin event. I think if the top 6 teams are pre-qualified according to rankings & maybe the previous WC, then the next 4 places could be battled out by the remaining Test nations and the leading 12/16 associates. The Top ranked nations 7 to 10 would be seeded at the top of the 4 pools. Whoever finishes top of their pool gains entry into the main Draw. I think this would make the qualifiers battle-hardened & give the Associates who don't qualify some sort of guage as to where they are at. I think people & the ICC don't want to see Australia beat the USA by 10 wickets with 200 balls remaining. I think there is huge pootential in the 20/20 WC to expand the amount of teams. This should be done by the ICC to get Olympic & Commonwealth Games admission. TBC

Posted by Sulav(Nepal) on (September 18, 2010, 15:00 GMT)

Come on. that's not good for the game in any way possible. That is clearly killing the game and its fan base in country like ours. Look at the football world cup, teams from all across the globe play and that's why it is a global game. What this sort of step means that cricket is eventually gonna lose its "minor members". If teams like pakistan has so many dark faces already, they should start questioning themselves for not allowing enough exposure to associates and affiliates. And if this sort of change do take place(which I hope doesn't), then the full members should also go through qualification rounds playing against the affiliates.

Posted by waynef on (September 18, 2010, 6:44 GMT)

hi ive started a facebook group called cricket lovers against the suggested redution to 10 teams for the world cup. any one who feels the same plze feel free to join- would b great to have u on board. letsw b herd. best wishes to all

Posted by Ben on (September 17, 2010, 21:45 GMT)

Here we have an ever increasing number of countries that want to play this great sport and compete at the highest level and yet we are telling them they aren't really wanted. Surely every ICC member, new or old, large or small, has the right to be given a realistic chance to qualify for the World Cup. For the health of the game long term, we all need to cast aside the total obsession that cricket now has with making more and more money. We all have a responsibility to the game. That includes, the fans, the media, the broadcasters and the full members. There are plenty of people involved in the media that know that this proposal is all to do with greed. Why aren't they speaking out? Those who follow the 95 associate and affiliate nations closely are aware that massive improvements have been made, standards are rising and playing numbers are increasing rapidly. We need the emerging nations as much as they need us. I just hope everybody wakes up to that now, not when it is too late.

Posted by Jashan(India) on (September 17, 2010, 14:44 GMT)

Very disgusting proposal to have just 10 teams (Practically means no associates) for 50-50 WC. I agree 16 Team format did dilute the tournament but a 14 team format is good enough to have a competitive WC along with exposure to Associates. The 20-20 Format should be even expanded beyond 16 to 18 team format. I hope 50-50 WC does not become a 10 nation WC.

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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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