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ICC World Cup December 2018 news round-up

December 14th, 2018Cricket
With just five months to go until England and Wales host the ICC World Cup 2019, Expat Sport brings you a round-up on world news surrounding the event and its build up. ICC chief executive ‘confident’ of securing a corruption-free World Cup

In the wake of seemingly endless match-fixing scandals over the last few years, top boss of cricket’s governing body, Dave Richardson, says that he is ‘confident’ the work being done in conjunction with law enforcement agencies worldwide is enough to secure a crime-free ICC World Cup 2019.

As part of his press statement, the International Cricket Council chief executive called upon National governments to have a firmer role in stamping out corruption in the games which has so badly affected international matches and lucrative T20 as well as other franchise versions of the game.

Richardson says that his ICC anti-corruption unit “is trying to be much more proactive in first of all disrupting these criminals who are travelling the world trying to corrupt the game.

Working hand in hand with the law enforcement agencies will help us do that. So (we are) very confident that we will keep the World Cup corruption free,”

At the Delhi event he was speaking at, Richardson went on to say: “We are persuading governments to introduce legislation that can make attempts to fix cricket matches a criminal offence and put these people behind bars.”

Richardson confirmed that there are numerous ongoing investigations into match-fixing, betting irregularities and other forms of corruption in the game

In the latest round of allegations and game tarnishing revelations, Sri Lanka bowling coach Nuwan Zoysa was suspended in October over accusations of match-fixing.

Perhaps more shockingly, former Sri Lankan opener and ex-selector Sanath Jayasuriya was also charged for failing to cooperate with a match-fixing probe and concealing information in October.

As well as answering questions on the ongoing fight against corruption, 59-year-old Richardson, a former South African wicket-keeper was asked for his tips to win the World Cup.

Obviously a proud Proteus, his answer seemed inevitable if tinged with a large dose of realism:

"South Africa must be my favourites but if you ask me who can win it then it is anybody's game. If England do not win at home, the No 1 team in the world right now, they'll never win it,"

When reminded that he was making these comments in front of a partisan Indian audience as the event was in New Delhi, he smiled and remarked:

"India is always there, I think they've been in the semi-finals of almost every event over the last few years. You would be silly not to bet or you would be silly to bet against them.

The bottom line is that we wanted competitive cricket, one-sided games are not good. People enjoy this format and it gives us a chance of providing that type of cricket. Normally in England, you are guaranteed home support for all the teams as the cultural mix-up of cricket fans in the UK is very diverse. Noisy crowds, good pitches, and equally balanced teams should make it a great event."


Nissan tour World Cup trophy around India until Boxing Day

As official automotive sponsors of the ICC World Cup 2019, Nissan has embarked on a mammoth road trip around India displaying the World Cup trophy and their new Kicks vehicle.

“Cricket in India is much more than a sport,” said Thomas Kuehl, president, Nissan India Operations. “We take pride in being an integral part of this sport, which unites the nation. As the official car, the new Nissan Kicks make’s a debut for our consumers in the country and is proud to drive the ICC Cricket World Cup 2019 Trophy Tour to millions of fans across India.”

The Indian leg of this tour will see the beautiful trophy travels to eight major cities including Mumbai, Pune, Ahmedabad, Bangalore, Chennai, Kolkata, Hyderabad and Delhi. The trophy will be on display in prominent locations in all those cities including colleges, shopping centre and business centres.


Ashley Giles named as new director of ECB

After a 2-month selection process following the resignation of Andrew Straus, who stepped down to care for his wife during her cancer treatment, England cricket have appointed former international spinner Ashley Giles as his successor.

Andy Flower, who was working as interim head of the ECB while the interview process was ongoing, has been continuously employed by the organisation since leaving his post as England head coach, but it remains to be seen if his role will continue under the new Giles regime.

The appointment is set to be announced in the next few days. It will be a very intense start to his tenure with the oncoming World Cup to be hosted on the ECB's home turf and the small matter of finding a replacement for current England coaching bosses Trevor Bayliss and Paul Farbrace, both of whom are set to leave their posts at the end of the 2019 season.




Ex-England batsman, Ian Bell tips England, India and Pakistan as World Cup favourites and eyes a potential comeback.

While he believes previous winners Australia may still prove to be ‘very dangerous’ opponents in next year’s competition, Warwickshire batsman, Ian Bell says you can’t look past Pakistan, India or England to raise the trophy.

“I think people are saying they (England) are the favourites and rightly so. The 50-over cricket they have played over the last three years has been outstanding.

It’s going to be an exciting tournament but, as we saw in the ICC Champions Trophy last year, Pakistan are a very dangerous side with lots and lots of match-winners and exciting players in their team.

India, as they always are at World Cups, are going to be very strong.

I wouldn’t be surprised if Australia are there or thereabouts if they get their bowling attack together and fully fit and get a squad together from all the players they can pick from. I think they will still be very dangerous when it comes around to the World Cup.

I think it will be a very interesting tournament but, for me at the minute, I would be looking at either: England, Pakistan or India to go all the way.”

As for his own form, after an excellent English domestic season, Bell believes he is playing well enough to remain in England contention.

“I feel that I am playing at the top of my game – I had a fantastic season in England and I am looking forward to the Bangladesh Premier League and Pakistan Super League challenges. ‘If an international call-up was to come, then I would absolutely love it again, but for me the focus at the minute is to play the cricket I am playing and enjoy the upcoming challenges.”


In hopeful bid to improve World Cup chances, Sri Lanka recruit new batting and bowling coaches.

Following a poor run of form, the latest of which a series whitewash at the hands of England, Sri Lanka have cast their net for new coaching input and made two key recruitments this month.

Jonathan Lewis has been named Sri Lanka's new batting coach, with the former England player given special focus on preparing the national team for next year's World Cup. His appointment by Sri Lanka Cricket comes just days after Australia's Steve Rixon also recruited as fielding coach.

His playing pedigree includes 13 ODIs for England and one Test. Lewis, 43, has left his post as head coach of the Durham County Cricket Club to take on the new role for Sri Lanka.

Lewis will join Rixon, 64, later this month for Sri Lanka's tour of New Zealand, where the visitors will play two Tests, three ODIs and one Twenty20 match.

The posts are both World Cup-specific, with Sri Lanka Cricket chief executive, Ashley de Silva confirming that their roles will run until the end of the upcoming World Cup in July 2019.

As we head into the festive season, Expat Sport’s Dan McTiernan summarises some of the standout stories among the latest ICC Cricket World Cup 2019 related news clippings.