With a number of matches in the ongoing ICC Cricket World Cup 2019 washed out and with several teams forced to share points, all eyes are once again towards the sky as India get set to take on New Zealand at Trent Bridge in Nottingham on Thursday. And the signs from the weather Gods are not too optimistic with clouds opening up since the wee morning hours.
While it has already been raining since dawn, the UK Met Office has said there is a strong chance of morning showers in Nottingham continuing till around the time when the match is scheduled to start - 10.30 am (UK time), 3 pm (IST). It is predicted that there is 80% chance of strong rain at around 10 am (local time) when the toss takes place and it would continue for two hours before relenting. The conditions, however, are likely to remain overcast although showers could stay away for the rest of the day.
Private weather-monitoring agency AccuWeather, however, predicts that the rain could make a comeback at around 4 pm (local time) and continue for at least an hour.
Such predictions strongly indicate that the match between India and New Zealand could be a shortened affair, one that would still be better than a completely washed out encounter. Several matches have already been washed out in the tournament so far due to unseasonal rains in the UK. The International Cricket Council recently came under fire for not allotting reserve days for matches before the semis but it defended the decision by saying that rains in the UK in June are a rare occurrence and that it would have been a logistical and scheduling nightmare to have back-up days in the marquee cricket tournament.
A washout and the consequent sharing of points, however, tends to have a deep impact the prospects of teams to move ahead in the tournament and puts the focus on the points table - rather than the result on the field.