ICC news March 7, 2012

ICC suggests increasing cap on T20s during World T20 year

The ICC's Chief Executives Committee (CEC) has recommended that member countries play three additional Twenty20 internationals during a World Twenty20 year, to help in their preparations for the global event. That would mean each of ten full ICC members can play a maximum of fifteen Twenty20s, but the decision needs to be ratified by the ICC's Executive Board.

At the moment, each member country is allowed to play six home and six away matches, and a maximum of three Twenty20 matches in a bilateral series.

The CEC also recommended that the number of teams be increased from 12 to 16 for the 2014 ICC World Twenty20, to be played in Bangladesh. Last June, during the annual conference, the ICC board had decided to cull four Associate-Affiliate teams from the 2012 and 2014 editions. Haroon Lorgat, the ICC chief executive, reasoned the move was inevitable due to structural issues, including costing, with regard to a "package" of three ICC events.

According to Lorgat, by adding four teams to the 2015 50-over World Cup, the ICC had no choice but to cut the number from the Twenty20 events. "If you change one, you have to change the other," he told ESPNcricinfo.

Lorgat sent out a more promising message this time to the Associates and the Affiliates, after the two-day CEC meeting in Dubai. "It was an important discussion and the CEC agreed that further conversations to strategically manage T20 cricket and also to promote all three formats would be beneficial," Lorgat stated in a media release.

In another move to encourage the lesser nations, and in its approach to globalise cricket, the CEC suggested that the Associate and Affiliate Members "consider submitting a detailed proposition" to host a future ICC World Twenty20 event in a developing country or region. Also on the CEC list was the recommendation that the process of hosting the men's and women's events jointly during the World Twenty20 continue.

In addition, the ICC World T20 qualifiers are set for greater exposure when the tournament begins on March 13. QuipuTV, a media company based in Scotland, has signed a deal to stream 14 group matches live online. "This is an exciting opportunity for Associate and Affiliate cricket to be seen by a global audience," Tim Anderson, the ICC's global development manager said. "We are delighted that fans will be able to watch a live online stream of the biggest tournament in the history of the ICC development programme."

Nagraj Gollapudi is an assistant editor at ESPNcricinfo