ICC confirms pathway to Under-19 Cricket World Cup 2022
The International Cricket Council (ICC), on Sunday, announced the rescheduled qualification pathway to the Under-19 Men's Cricket World Cup 2022. As many as 33 teams will compete in the qualifying tournament for five World Cup spots. Notably, the West Indies are scheduled to host the 14th edition of Under-19 WC in early 2022. Here is more on the same.
A total of 11 teams to compete in U-19 WC
A total of 11 teams including Afghanistan, Australia, Bangladesh, England, India, New Zealand, Pakistan, South Africa, Sri Lanka, West Indies and Zimbabwe, will take part in the Under-19 WC 2022. The remaining five spots will be determined by a regional qualification tournament. Notably, qualification for the 2022 edition Under-19 World Cup was delayed by a year due to COVID-19 pandemic.
Seven regional events will take place to decide qualifiers
For the Qualifiers, the 33 spots will be decided by seven regional events, starting June 2021. The aforementioned seven regions are - Asia, Amercias, East-Asia Pacific (EAP), Africa and Europe. Interestingly, a two-division qualification pathway will take place in the Asia and Africa regions due to depth in strength. The winner of each regional Qualifier will claim the ticket to U-19 WC.
The Africa Division 2 will mark the beginning
The proceedings will begin in Tanzania with the Africa Division 2 in June 2021. Tanzania, along with Botswana, Kenya, Mozambique, Rwanda, and Sierra Leone will be fighting for two spots to join Namibia, Nigeria, and Uganda in the Africa Qualifier (September 2021). The top team from the September event, hosted by Nigeria, will secure their spot in the West Indies.
The Asia region also include two divisions
Similarly, the Asia region, which also has two divisions, will see two qualifiers emerging out. Bhutan, Hong Kong, Oman, Qatar, Saudi Arabia, Singapore and Thailand in Division 2 will contest with Malaysia, Nepal and UAE nine in the Asia Qualifier, which will be hosted by the United Arab Emirates. Here as well, the top team will qualify for the U-19 WC.
How will the other regional events pan out?
In Europe, Scotland will host the Qualifier, and will compete alongside Denmark, Guernsey, Ireland, Jersey, and the Netherlands from July 30 to August 5, for the World Cup spot. Besides, USA will host the Americas Qualifier, joining Argentina, Bermuda and Canada between August 18 and 25. The EAP Qualifier comprises Indonesia, PNG, Vanuatu and hosts Japan (September 28-October 4).
The ICC Head of Events speaks on the mega tournament
Speaking on the same, ICC Head of Events, Chris Tetley, stated, "The ICC U-19 Men's Cricket World Cup showcases the future stars of our game. With 33 teams in the running for five World Cup spots I am sure we will see a highly competitive series of events and the emergence of players that will become household names in the future."