Who will make it to the 2023 Cricket World Cup?
As the 2023 Cricket World Cup countdown in India continues, the race to qualify for the tournament is heating up. Seven teams have already booked their places, leaving three spots up for grabs. Here’s a look at who’s in, who’s out, and who needs to win what to make it to the tournament.
The current standings
The current standings show that India (hosts), England, Australia, New Zealand, Pakistan, Bangladesh, and Afghanistan have all qualified for the tournament. The West Indies currently occupies the eighth spot, but they could still be overtaken by South Africa, Sri Lanka, or Ireland.
West Indies needs help
The West Indies, former champions in 1975 and 1979, are currently in eighth place in the Super League, holding the final qualifying spot. However, they have played all of their 24 games and won just nine, leaving them with 88 points. They can still be ousted by South Africa, Sri Lanka, or Ireland. To qualify, the West Indies need Sri Lanka to lose their series against New Zealand, the Netherlands to upset South Africa, and Bangladesh to avoid a whitewash against Ireland in May.
South Africa has a chance
South Africa is currently ninth in the table but has two games left to play against the bottom side Netherlands. Winning both matches would put South Africa in eighth place and into the World Cup – as long as Sri Lanka does not win 3-0 in New Zealand. One victory would put South Africa level on points with the West Indies, who currently have a better net run rate. However, they would still need Sri Lanka to win no more than one game against the Kiwis and for the Irish to win only two of their three games against Bangladesh while maintaining a worse net run rate.
Sri Lanka is in control
Sri Lanka, the 1996 winners, are in the enviable position of qualifying their own hands. A 3-0 win in New Zealand will give them the eighth spot regardless of how anyone else gets on.
The Ireland outsiders
Ireland needs everything to go their way, notably winning their three-match series against Bangladesh, the final match in the Super League. Even that might not be enough to go through. They need South Africa to slip up against the Dutch and the Sri Lankans to lose at least one match in New Zealand.
For the teams who miss out, there is a final chance to make it to India as one of the two best from a 10-team qualifying tournament in Zimbabwe. The hosts and the Netherlands are already in the mix for this. The five who come down from the Super League will be joined by Scotland, Oman, and Nepal, who were the top three teams in World Cup League 2, plus two others still to be decided. These final two will be settled in Namibia next week in a League 2 repechage when the hosts will be joined in a play-off competition by Papua New Guinea, the United Arab Emirates, the United States of America, Jersey, and Canada.
Stay tuned for more updates as the race to the 2023 Cricket World Cup continues!