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Coronavirus impact sees Women’s Cricket World Cup pushed back to 2022
The International Cricket Council (ICC) has announced that the 2021 Women’s World Cup - due to be hosted by New Zealand in February - is to be pushed back to 2022.
The 12-month delay of the 50-over women’s tournament will see 2022 present a full calendar in women's cricket, with the 50-over World Cup now scheduled for February and March, a Women's T20 World Cup set to take place in South Africa, with dates to be confirmed, and women's cricket making its debut at the Commonwealth Games, scheduled to take place in the English city of Birmingham, from 28th July to 8th August that year.
Only five teams are confirmed to compete in the competition - New Zealand, Australia, England, India and South Africa - with three more spots needing to be decided by a qualifying tournament that was due to take place in Sri Lanka last month, only for the series to be postponed due to the impact of Coronavirus.
The need to get the qualifier played next year, and give all eight teams sufficient cricket in the lead-up to the main event, has been cited as the reason for the 12-month delay, along with “the health and safety of everyone involved”.
However, the ICC is permitting the 2021 Men's T20 World Cup in India is to go ahead as scheduled, despite two million COVID-19 cases in the country to date.
Explaining the rescheduling, ICC Chief Executive Manu Sawhney stated “we now have absolute clarity on the future of ICC events enabling all of our members to focus on the rescheduling of lost international and domestic cricket.
"We have taken the decision to move the ICC Women’s Cricket World Cup to give players from every competing nation the best opportunity to be ready for the world’s biggest stage and there is still a global qualifier to complete to decide the final three teams.
"There has been no women’s international cricket played since the conclusion of the ICC Women’s T20 World Cup earlier this year and due to the varying impact of COVID-19 globally that is likely to remain the situation for a number of the teams.
"Moving the event by 12 months gives all competing teams the chance to play a sufficient level of cricket ahead of both the qualification event and leading into a Cricket World Cup so the integrity of the tournament is maintained."
New Zealand organisers had been hoping the event would proceed, having advertised a job vacancy for a ‘biosecurity manager’ last week.
Image: The final of the Women’s World Cup 2021 was to have taken place at Auckland's Eden Park.
8th September 2017 - Cricket Australia plans expansion of BBL and women’s cricket
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