Rain forced umpires to call off the match between Bangladesh and Sri Lanka. (Photo: Twitter/@cricketworldcup)
The International Cricket Council (ICC) has defended not having reserve days for the league games of Cricket World Cup 2019. The ICC came under fire after the game between Sri Lanka and Bangladesh on Tuesday washed out due to rain. This was the third game in this World Cup that had to be abandoned due to rain.
Following the washout, Bangladesh coach Steve Rhodes expressed his frustration saying that "we put men on the moon, so why can't we have a reserve day, when actually this tournament is a long tournament." Rhodes said that there is enough time between the games and a washout is a big disappointment not just for the teams but for the fans as well.
"I know logistically it would have been a big headache for the tournament organisers. I know that it would have been difficult, but we have got quite a lot of time in between games, and if we have got to travel a day later, then so be it. The games are spread out. I would say that it's disappointing for the crowd, as well. They have got tickets to see a game of cricket, and you know it would be up to them if they can get there the day after," the Bangladeshi coach ranted.
The game against Sri Lanka was crucial for Bangladesh, after they lost two consecutive matches. They were the favourites for the match and losing a point to a team like Sri Lanka was indeed pretty hard to digest.
Reacting to the criticism, CEO of ICC governing body David Richardson said that having reserve days for every league game would have been a task extremely complex to deliver.
"Factoring in a reserve day for every match at the ICC Men's Cricket World Cup would significantly increase the length of the tournament and practically would be extremely complex to deliver," he said.
"It would impact pitch preparation, team recovery and travel days, accommodation and venue availability, tournament staffing, volunteer and match officials availability, broadcast logistics and very importantly the spectators who in some instances have travelled hours to be at the game. There is also no guarantee that the reserve day would be free from rain either.
"Up to 1200 people are on site to deliver a match and everything associated with it including getting it broadcast and a proportion of them are moving around the country so reserve days in the group stage would require a significant uplift in the number of staff. We have reserve days factored in for the knock-out stages, knowing that over the course of 45 group games we should play the large majority," Richardson said.