Cricket Australia backs minnows' ban from WC

Published: Wednesday, April 6, 2011, 10:52 [IST]
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Sydney, Apr 5: Cricket Australia has supported the International Cricket Council (ICC)"s decision to cut associate teams from the next World Cup, saying that they robbed Australia of momentum in the recent competition.

Cricket Australia backs minnows' WC ban

The ICC has confirmed that the 2015 World Cup in Australia and New Zealand would be contested by the 10 full member nations, four fewer than the recent tournament held in the subcontinent.

“The Australian team had two seven-day breaks at one stage and in that period, the only cricket they were playing was against minnow countries. So, from our point of view, we went a bit stale there in the middle (of the tournament)," the Herald Sun quoted Cricket Australia chief executive James Sutherland, as saying.

“I"m not making excuses, but it was difficult for the team to build any momentum into what proved to be a clutch match against Pakistan immediately before the quarter-finals. The batsmen hadn"t faced full member attack for nigh on a month," he added.

The Cricket Australia chief further said that having 10 nations compete in the 2015 tournament would be ideal.

“We believe 10 teams will be a really good format for the event, perhaps it might be a one round league where everyone plays each other once and then a semi-final and a final," Sutherland said.

“The ICC needs to make those decisions, but when you think about that as a format, every match has great context and we will see some really good quality cricket," he added.

The previous World Cup format had been heavily criticized for the length of time between team"s group matches and as a result, taking six weeks to complete the event.

Canada, Kenya, the Netherlands, Ireland and Zimbabwe were the non-Test playing nations participating in the 2011 edition on the Indian sub-continent.

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