Belfast Telegraph

Cricket World Cup: Tournament will be streamlined

By David Clough

A decision on the number of teams to compete at the next World Cup is set to be made by the ICC following a meeting of its executive board in Mumbai today.

The ICC has previously stated it would cut the number of competing teams from 14 to 10 for the 2015 tournament in Australia and New Zealand.

The format of the World Cup has been criticised for being too long, with India's success in the final yesterday arriving six weeks after they opened the tournament against Bangladesh.

A reduction in the number of competing teams is likely to see the number of Associate members reduced after teams such as Canada and Kenya were on the wrong end of some heavy defeats.

“The length of 50 overs will find certain teams out but I think there are 10 teams that can seriously compete in that format,” ICC chief executive Haroon Lorgat explained.

“That's a debate we are still finalising; in fact the board meeting over the next two days will consider that and will determine which teams will play in the 2015 World Cup.”

The ICC currently has 10 full member nations with Zimbabwe the only of those not a Test-playing country.

There may, however, be scope for at least one of the Associate nations to play in the tournament with the ICC yet to reveal how qualification would take place.

While the Associate nations struggled at the recent tournament Ireland proved their ability to compete with the full members, highlighted by victory over England.

Meanwhile, Sachin Tendulkar described winning the World Cup in front of his home crowd in Mumbai as the proudest moment of his life.

“I could not have asked for anything better than this,” he said.

“Winning the World Cup ... it is the proudest moment of my life. It's never too late. Thanks to all my team-mates. Without their fabulous performances, this would never have happened.”

Belfast Telegraph

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