April 07, 2011

Horse 1171 - The 2015 Cricket "World" Cup

Let's hear it for the ICC and their decision to only allow the Ten Full Members of the ICC to play in the 2015 and 2019 World Cups - Well Done to You.

No only has the ICC successfully managed to exclude, alienate and offend the vast majority of Associate Members but they also managed the double act of reducing the World Cup in stature to that of the ICC Champion's Trophy.

The reasons given by the ICC was that the 2011 format of the World Cup was unwieldy, well if they wanted a less unwieldy tournament then maybe they should be looking at the format of the tournament rather than excluding so called "minnows".

There were 49 matches in the 2011 Cricket World Cup. The 14 teams were divided into two pools of seven; each playing a round robin format and then the top four teams from each pool played a knockout. Basically any fool could have told you that playing a round robin of 7 teams each was going to be unwieldy from the outset. My solution to avoid this would have been something similar to the format used by UEFA for their Euro tournaments from 1996 until 2012*

With four pools of four, each side plays a round robin and then the top two from each pool go through to the knockout phase. This results in only 31 games being played but with two extra teams than the 2011 Cricket World Cup.
Even with four pools of five you still end up with 47 games being played but with six extra teams than the 2011 Cricket World Cup and a whole ten more than the propsed excuse for tournaments in 2015 and 2019.

By denying the so-called "minnows" the chance to play on the world stage, the ICC effectively condemns them to perpetual badness. That's neither good for the respective nations who wish to improve, nor for the image of the ICC itself which now appears to be driven by self-interest, politics and increasingly money from India.

Already I can forsee both the 2015 and 2019 Cricket World Cups being abject failures and to pinch a quote from FIFA, can that be really said to be "for the good of the game?"

*Euro 2016 will be expanded to 24 teams and even with 24 teams they will still only play 51 games which is two more than the 2011 Cricket World Cup but with more than double the number of entrants.

1 comment:

Neeraj said...

The solution is to have a round robin amongst all the 10 teams. That way, you have 45 games. Top 4 then into semifinal