London: India will be ranked sixth in the next cricket World Cup, which is slated to be held in South Africa in 2003, according to a new system announced by the International Cricket Council. Australia, South Africa, Sri Lanka and Pakistan will be the first four teams in rankings as per the new system.
The new system, announced on Wednesday, will seed teams in terms of their performance in the last World Cup in England in 1999 and recent performance in One-day cricket. According to some reports, the organisers could draw India into the inaugural tie with South Africa to attract crowd, keeping in mind the Indian emigrants.
A Pakistan-Australia inaugural match is unlikely considering that both teams played in the 1999 finals. Group 'A' would comprise Australia, Pakistan, England, West Indies, Zimbabwe and a ICC Trophy qualifier. Group 'B' will have South Africa, Sri Lanka, India, New Zealand, Bangladesh and a qualifier.
Seeding: Australia, South Africa, Sri Lanka, Pakistan, England, India, New Zealand, West Indies, Zimbabwe and Bangladesh. UNI