The International Cricket Council has announced the warm-up fixtures for the 10 sides before the start of the ICC Cricket World Cup 2019 which will be held in England. In a statement released by the ICC, the matches will be played from May 24 to May 28 and it will be played in four venues, namely the Bristol County Ground, Cardiff Wales stadium, Hampshire Bowl and The Oval. All the 10 sides will play two warm-up games and they will be 50 overs. However, the matches will not be granted ODI status and the teams can use all the 15 members in the side.
India will be playing two warm-up games and they will be against New Zealand at The Oval on May 25 while their second game will be against Bangladesh at Cardiff. Australia, the five-time champions, will play against England at Hampshire and against Sri Lanka in Hampshire. The Indian Premier League is scheduled to begin on March 23 and will be played in India and it is expected to end by mid-May. Virat Kohli’s Indian cricket team will begin their World Cup campaign against South Africa in Hampshire on June 5.
Speaking about the announcement of the fixtures, ICC Managing Director Steve Elworthy said, “It is always a huge milestone announcing an exciting warm-up schedule for the ICC Men’s Cricket World Cup as it really highlights just how close we are to the action getting underway this summer. These games provide another fantastic opportunity for fans to see world-class players at their local venue and allow the tournament to engage local schools and communities with another chance to get involved with the Cricket World Cup.”
After the clash against South Africa, India face two massive games against Australia at The Oval on June 9 while they take on New Zealand on June 13 in Trent Bridge but all eyes will be on the June 16 clash against Pakistan in Manchester. The 2019 World Cup will be held in England and it will be the first time after 20 years that the nation is hosting the tournament. The format will be like the 1992 World Cup where every team plays the other and the top four secure qualification into the play-offs.