ICC is planning to increase the number of teams at the T20 World Cup 2024, with an eye to expand the game to a global level, a report in ESPN Cricinfo states.
ICC understands that for Cricket to go global, they need to take it to more countries which means they need to allow more teams in the future ICC events.
ICC Has Plans To Increase Number Of Teams In T20 Formats
The world body also understands that T20 will be the best format in such a scenario as it is easy to adapt for the new countries and the competition between the sides will a lot less one-sided. Women’s T20 World Cup has been seeing participation from teams like Uganda. But this is a marked change in their attitude as recently ICC had curtailed the number of teams in the 50 over World Cup.
“The ICC has long seen the T20 format as a vehicle for the game’s expansion and there has been previous talk of such an expansion. The ICC have already confirmed their plans to increase the number of teams in their women’s competitions.”
“It is, perhaps, the move to increasing the number of teams in the 50-over World Cup which provides the most revealing insight into the changing mood of the ICC. In recent years, the ICC cut the number of teams in the 50-over World Cup (from 16 in 2007, to 14 in 2011 and 2015 and 10 in 2019) arguing that broadcasters preferred the streamlined format with the probability of fewer one-sided games,” according to the report.
However, the fate of the T20I World Cup tournament in 2021 is under dark clouds, with the third wave of the COVID-19 virus expected to hit India later this year. In that case, the competition is likely to be shifted abroad. While the future of this year’s competition is in jeopardy, the International Cricket Council (ICC) is looking at an even bigger picture.
The apex cricket body reportedly plans to add more teams in future ICC events to develop cricket globally. As many as 20 teams can participate in the T20 World Cup 2024. A total of 16 teams are slated to participate in the T20 World Cup 2021, and ICC would want associate nations like Namibia, Scotland, and Ireland to do well.
BCCI Desires Cricket’s Inclusion At Olympics But Won’t Tolerate Interference From Indian Olympic Association
Meanwhile, the report also states that BCCI has seconded ECB in pushing the game into the Olympics but they are in no mood to crossroads with Indian Olympic Association. Unlike IOC which is run by the government, BCCI is a private organization and has no stake-holding from the government whatsoever.
“It is understood that the subject of the Olympics was raised at a recent CEC meeting by the ECB’s Tom Harrison. The BCCI has also recently signaled their desire for involvement, albeit with the caveat that they will not tolerate interference from the Indian Olympic Association,” the report maintains further.
The only time cricket has been played was at the 1900 Summer Olympics with only a men’s contest when Great Britain won the gold medal, but the possibility of it being contested at the Olympics again has recently resurfaced.
In 2020, the BCCI in its Annual General Meeting decided to back the ICC’s bid for the inclusion of cricket, in the T20 format, in the 2028 Los Angeles Olympics after getting some clarifications from the International Olympic Committee. In May 2020, Eoin Morgan, the captain of the England cricket team, supported the idea of using the T10 cricket format at the Olympics.
If everything goes to plan, the Indian cricket teams will play at the 2028 Los Angeles Olympics in a T20 event. The ICC had formed a committee in December to suggest ways for cricket’s inclusion at Los Angeles 2028. The panel told the Apex Council that cricket is played in 75 countries and argued that it’s the right time for India to expand its presence on the world map