The International Cricket Council (ICC) have confirmed that the qualifiers for 2021 Women’s World Cup and regional qualifiers for the U19 World Cup have both been postponed in wake of the Covid-19 pandemic. The council further confirmed that the matches will be rescheduled at a practical date.
The ICC Women’s World Cup 2021 qualifiers and the ICC Under-19 World Cup 2022 regional qualifiers have become the latest victims of the Covid-19 pandemic, as the sport’s governing body confirmed that both the aforementioned events have been postponed due to safety concerns. While the Women’s World Cup qualifiers - a ten-team competition which includes the participation of Sri Lanka, Pakistan and Bangladesh - was set to be held between July 3 to 19, the ICC U19 Cricket World Cup Qualifier Europe Division 2 was also expected to be held in a July-August window, but both the events have now been postponed indefinitely due to the never-ending spread of the novel coronavirus.
Chris Tetley, ICC Head of Events, confirmed the news and revealed that the safety of the players will be continued to be prioritized and added that both competitions will be rescheduled at a practical, feasible date once normalcy is restored.
"In light of the continuing travel restrictions, global health concerns and government and public health authority advice we have decided to postpone two further upcoming qualifying events due to the Covid-19 pandemic. The Women's Cricket World Cup Qualifier and the Europe qualifier to the U19 Cricket World Cup 2022 have both been impacted," said Chris Tetley, ICC Head of Events, reported Cricbuzz.
"Our priority during this difficult period is to protect the well-being of players, coaches, officials, fans and the whole cricket community and we will take well-informed, responsible decisions in relation to both postponing events and resuming international cricket.
"These are both important events with the Women's CWC Qualifier one step away from New Zealand 2021 and the Europe qualifier which signifies the start of the U19 Cricket World Cup 2022 pathway. We will work in partnership with the Members to find an appropriate window to reschedule these events as soon as is safe and practical to do so. I would like to thank the Members for their cooperation and continued support," Tetley added.
Both the Women’s World Cup 2021 qualifiers and U19 World Cup 2022 regional qualifiers join a long list of tournaments / bilateral series’ that have already been suspended, including the Indian Premier League (IPL), England’s tour of Sri Lanka and Australia’s tour of Bangladesh. It remains to be seen, however, if and whether the ICC will take the bold step of postponing the Men’s World T20, that is scheduled to take place in Australia later this year.