From World Cup to ICC Invitational
What is fair about denying the team ranked 10th in the world - Ireland - any chance of a spot in a 10-team World Cup asks Dave Tickner, writing in Sporting Life. The 2015 World Cup has been replaced by a 2015 ICC Invitational, he says, as no tournament that denies an entry route to all but a select few has the right to the title of 'World Cup'.
What is 'just' about telling every other cricketing nation outside your protected elite that they are not welcome at the game's biggest global gathering? The ICC have cancelled the 2015 World Cup. No tournament that denies an entry route to all but the select few has the right to that title.
The World Cup has two main problems: it's too long, and has too many meaningless matches. Simply reducing the teams solves neither. You could increase the number of competing teams to 16 and polish off a neat 31-game tournament with at worst a handful of dead rubbers through four groups of four, followed by knockouts from the quarter-finals onwards. But in the 2015 ICC Invitational, the 10 teams will play each other in a round-robin first stage followed by semi-finals and a final. That equals 48 games. The World Cup just finished had 49 games.
Nikita Bastian is a sub-editor at ESPNcricinfo