The International Cricket Council (ICC) has confirmed the qualification process for the additional ICC Men’s T20 World Cup that will take place in 2021 in India.
The 16-team Men’s T20 World Cup 2021, which replaces a previously scheduled eight-team ICC Champions Trophy, will see 11 regional qualification events take place across the five ICC regions (Africa, Americas, Asia, East-Asia Pacific and Europe) with eight teams progressing to one of two global qualifying events.
Additionally, the bottom four teams from the ICC T20 Men’s World Cup 2020 will join the regional qualifiers in the global qualification events along with the next four best T20I ranked teams as of January 1, 2020 namely Zimbabwe, Nepal, UAE and Hong Kong.
This means, 16 teams will compete for four T20 World Cup spots in two global qualifiers with the top two teams from each progressing to the event proper in 2021. The 12 teams, which make round two of the ICC T20 World Cup 2020 in Australia, will gain automatic entry into the event the following year.
Reflecting on the same, ICC Head of Events Chris Tetley said, “The decision to replace the Champions Trophy with a T20 World Cup in 2021 was driven by our commitment to global growth and use T20 as our vehicle to do that. Of course that presented us with a one-off qualification challenge.Our regional and global qualification pathways have been established and consistently provide compelling and competitive cricket and we didn’t want to lose that despite the tight timelines available to us.
“We worked through a number of options together with Members and we’re all strongly in favour of this approach which allows for both global and regional competitions on the pathway to the ICC Men’s T20 World Cup 2021.”
The ICC official website quoted William Glenwright, ICC General Manager Development as saying, “A meritocratic pathway to ICC events is of fundamental importance to our sport and Members and that philosophy has been at the heart of establishing this one-off process.The very best teams from the five regions will progress to one of the two global qualifiers and the chance of securing one of four spots to the ICC Men’s T20 World Cup 2021. My thanks to the ICC Development Committee for their support in reaching such a great conclusion for Associate Member cricket.”
All Members who meet the ICC Event Participation Criteria (EPPC) will be eligible to participate in the qualification for the ICC Men’s T20 World Cup 2021.
The 11 qualifying events will take place between March and September 2020. The two eight-team global qualifiers will take place between March and July 2021 and the distribution of the 16 teams across the two events will be confirmed following the ICC Men’s T20 World Cup 2020 when all participants will be known.