Windies drawn in T20 WC Group C
BRIDGETOWN, Barbados (CMC) — Storied Kensington Oval has been confirmed as the venue for the final of this year’s Twenty20 (T20) World Cup, with Trinidad and Tobago and Guyana hosting the semi-finals of the ninth edition of the International Cricket Council (ICC) showpiece.
In the fixtures announced Friday by organisers the Oval was named to stage its third major ICC final following on from the historic One-Day International World Cup in 2007 and the 2010 edition of the T20 World Cup, ending months-long speculation over the venue for the climax of the June 1-29 tournament.
The final will be one of nine matches carded for the Oval, a slate which includes three Super Eight second-stage fixtures and five group stage matches — including a blockbuster between reigning T20 World champions England and long-standing rivals Australia.
Hosts West Indies, installed in a favourable Group C with New Zealand, Afghanistan, Uganda and Papua New Guinea, will not play any of their group stage games at the Oval, however, Guyana, Trinidad and St Lucia hosting the Caribbean side’s group encounters.
In addition to hosting a semi-final, Trinidad and Tobago will stage four group stage games — including West Indies’ clash with New Zealand at Brian Lara stadium — while Guyana will showcase five group fixtures, along with their semi-final.
“The announcement of the match schedule for the ICC Men’s T20 World Cup 2024 marks a significant milestone in our preparations for this year’s tournament,” Cricket West Indies Chief Executive Officer Johnny Grave said.
“We know that teams, fans and cricket enthusiasts worldwide have been eagerly awaiting this announcement, and now that it is available it provides a road map for the thrilling journey that lies ahead.
“In addition to the match fixtures the announcement also highlights the host countries and iconic venues that will set the stage for the ICC Men’s T20 World Cup.
“Each host country and city will bring its own unique flavour to the tournament, and fans from every corner of the globe can expect an exciting blend of T20 cricketing entertainment, local culture, and warm hospitality.
“From classic rivalries to history-making upsets and continental showdowns, fans can start looking forward to an action-packed month of games at the ICC Men’s T20 World Cup next June. And we encourage everyone to get tickets as soon as they go on sale as we expect the demand to be high.”
A record 20 teams will contest the tournament, also being played in the United States for the first time, and will see England defending the title they won in November two years ago when they beat Pakistan during the final in Melbourne.
England will play in Group B alongside Australia, Namibia, Scotland and Oman while Pakistan clash with powerhouses India, along with Ireland, Canada and co-hosts United States in Group A.
Group D comprises 2014 champions Sri Lanka, South Africa, Bangladesh, the Netherlands and Nepal.
The tournament opener will see United States meet Canada in an all-North American affair in Dallas, marking the first time an ICC World Cup match will be played on American soil.
“The ICC Men’s T20 World Cup 2024 marks an exciting expansion of our sport, with more teams than ever before set to compete in this event,” said ICC chief executive, Geoff Allardice.
“It’s going to be an incredible spectacle, bringing together 20 international teams from Africa, the Americas, Asia, East-Asia Pacific and Europe.
“The release of the fixtures is made even more exciting for fans as we enter a new frontier, with the USA hosting a major ICC event for the first time. With 16 matches being played across three venues in the USA it allows us to make a statement in the world’s biggest sports market.
“It will also be great to have an ICC event back in the West Indies, which has such a rich history of the game.
“It has hosted World Cups with great success in the past and this tournament will certainly provide a boost to the game there, especially with the final being played in Barbados.”
The top two teams from each group will advance to the Super Eights, which will be played in Antigua and Barbuda, Barbados, St Lucia, and St Vincent and the Grenadines across two groups.
The top two teams from each Super Eights group will then qualify for the semi-finals on June 26 and 27.