Sports, Cricket

WI and SL in different groups as WC Qualifier fixtures released

Published : 23 May 2023 08:18 PM

Two-time winners the West Indies and 1996 champions Sri Lanka have been drawn in opposing groups for the upcoming ICC Men’s Cricket World Cup Qualifier that will take place in Zimbabwe between June 18 and July 9.

The ICC revealed the fixture for the crucial three-week tournament on Tuesday, with the West Indies drawn in Group A alongside tournament hosts Zimbabwe, European side the Netherlands, emerging Asian nation Nepal and the ever-improving USA.

Shai Hope’s charges will need to be at their best if they are to book a spot at this year’s ICC Men’s Cricket World Cup, with only the top-two sides from the 10-team tournament earning a ticket to the 50-over showcase in India at the end of the year.

Zimbabwe and the Netherlands will be familiar opponents for the West Indies with those three teams all progressing to the Qualifier courtesy of their finishing position during the inaugural ICC Men’s Cricket World Cup Super League, while Nepal and the USA earnt their spot via League 2 play and the recent Qualifier Play-off respectively.

Sri Lanka finished in 10th place on the Super League standings – one spot behind the West Indies – and will be looking for a top-two finish in Zimbabwe to ensure they maintain their excellent record of having participated in each edition of the World Cup.

The West Indies too have been to all 12 editions of the World Cup, while Zimbabwe are the next most successful side at the qualifier having participated in nine tournaments to date.

Nepal, USA and Oman have never made it through to the World Cup and will be looking to book their first appearance via a top-two finish at the qualifier.