The 11th edition of the ODI Cricket World Cup is just a few weeks away and it will be nothing like the previous installments. Let’s have a look at what we can expect from this year’s tournament:
1. Two new balls
In previous World Cups, the white ball was replaced after 34 overs but not with a new one. This time however, there will be 2 new balls at each end.
2. Only two powerplays
The first 10 overs will be powerplay with 2 fielders outside the circle. The other 5 over powerplay has to be taken before the 40th over with 3 fielders outside the circle.
3. Field restriction changes
Throughout the innings, the maximum fielders allowed outside the ring has been reduced from five to four.
4. From spin to seam
With the new fielding regulations and the fact that the tournament is to be held in Australia, spin bowling will not dominate as much as it did in 2011. The field restrictions and new balls will assist seamers more.
5. Less importance to part-time bowlers
With so many changes, the role of specialist bowlers will increase as and the role of part-time bowlers will be less along the course of the tournament.
6. Bowling action restrictions
More vigorous and stringent bowling action checks will result in bowlers who are under the radar to either miss out or modify their techniques. This will affect their performance.
7. Emergence of new stars
There are promising youngsters like Virat Kohli, Mitchell Starc, Moeen Ali, Corey Anderson etc. But with huge names like Tendulkar, Ponting and Muralitharan missing, this cup is short on legends.
8. No super over in knockouts
The super over will no longer be used in the case of a tie. ICC will be using head-to-head results to determine winners in knockouts. In the final, the trophy will be shared in the case of a tie.
9. Better decision review system
The Hot Spot and Real Time Snickometer are available unlike last time. The ball tracking technology for reviewing LBW decisions has also been upgraded.
10. Bigger More prize money
The prize money has been increased from USD 8 million to USD 10 million. Also, for the first time, even the teams who do not make it to the final 8 will be rewarded USD 35,000 each.
11. Increase in run rates
In 2011, the average run rate had gone above 5. Since 2014, it has boomed to 5.42 in Australia and 5.64 in New Zealand. With more fielding restrictions, it is bound to shoot up further.
12. The introduction of the ICC Fantasy League
The ICC has officially launched the fantasy league on 20th January, allowing cricket fans from all over to pick their favourite teams and compete. The ICC will reward the winners.
13. Extensive coverage
Not only is this going to be the most impressive broadcast in World Cup history but it will also be the most social one. The ICC Facebook page already has over 9.8 million followers.
Another World Cup of epic proportions is in the offing. So stay tuned for some great knocks, blistering spells and match-winning performances. It’s time to gear up as great cricketing nations collide in Down Under.