THE Windies side has an arduous task of trying to qualify direct for the ICC Cricket World Cup 2019 as it braced for an upcoming one-off ODI against Ireland in Belfast yesterday and a five-match ODI series against England from September 19-29.
The Windies side is currently on 78 points in the MRF Tyres ICC ODI Team Rankings, eight points behind eighth-placed Sri Lanka, whom it will need to overtake in order to qualify. The top seven ODI sides apart from host England as of September 30 qualify directly for ICC’s pinnacle 50-over event, which will take place from May 30 to July 15, 2019 in the United Kingdom.
The 1975 and 1979 champion side will have to beat Ireland and then also defeat England either 5-0 or by a 4-1 margin, in which it wins the last four matches. In other words, losing any match other than the opening match against England at Old Trafford on September 19 will allow Sri Lanka a direct passage.
Teams not getting direct places in the ICC Cricket World Cup 2019 will get another shot through a Qualifying tournament.
The ICC Cricket World Cup Qualifier 2018 will feature the bottom four sides from the MRF Tyres ICC ODI Team Rankings, the top four sides from the ICC World Cricket League Championship and the top two sides from ICC World Cricket League Division 2. The top two sides from the World Cup Qualifier will complete the 10-team line-up for the ICC Cricket World Cup 2019.
As for fourth-placed England, it will be able to gain a maximum of one point and reach 114 points, even if it wins the series 5-0. On the other hand, a 5-0 series loss will see it go down to fifth position and 106 points.
In the MRF Tyres ICC ODI Player Rankings, Joe Root is the leading England batsman in fourth position while Chris Woakes is the leading bowler at 11th place.
For the Windies, Marlon Samuels (43rd) and captain Jason Holder (20th) are the leading batsman and bowler, respectively.
The West Indies squad reads: Jason Holder (captain), Sunil Ambris, Devendra Bishoo, Miguel Cummins, Chris Gayle, Kyle Hope, Shai Hope, Alzarri Joseph, Evin Lewis, Jason Mohammed, Ashley Nurse, Rovman Powell, Marlon Samuels, Jerome Taylor and Kesrick Williams.
Meanwhile, India will host Australia for five ODIs from September 17 to 1 October, a series that gives both sides a chance to go atop the rankings table currently led by South Africa with 119 points.
India and Australia are both on 117 points, with Australia ahead on decimal points. A win for either side by a margin of 4-1 or better will see it move to number one position.
India vs. Australia series scenarios: India beat Australia 5-0, then India are 122 and Australia 113; India beat Australia 4-1, then India are120 and Australia 114; India beat Australia 3-2, then India are 118 and Australia 116. Australia beat India 3-2, then Australia are 118 and India 116; Australia beat India 4-1, then Australia are 120 and India 114; Australia beat India 5-0, then Australia are 122 and India 112.
India captain Virat Kohli is the number-one ranked batsman in the format, with Rohit Sharma (ninth) and Mahendra Singh Dhoni (10th) also in the top-10. Left-arm spinner Akshar Patel is ranked 10th among bowlers.
For Australia, opener David Warner is ranked second among batsmen while Hazlewood and Mitchell Starc are ranked first and third among bowlers.
Please note the following fxtures.
England versus West Indies – Tuesday, September 19: 1st ODI, Old Trafford, Manchester; Thursday, September 21: 2nd ODI, Trent Bridge, Nottingham; Sunday, September 24: 3rd ODI, County Ground, Bristol; Wednesday, September 27: 4th ODI, Kennington Oval, London; Friday, September 29: 5th ODI, Rose Bowl, Southampton.
India versus Australia – Sunday, September 17: 1st ODI, Chennai; Thursday, September 21: 2nd ODI, Kolkata; Sunday, September 24: 3rd ODI, Indore; Thursday, September 28: 4th ODI, Bengaluru; and Sunday, October 1-5: ODI, Nagpur.
MRF Tyres ICC ODI Team Rankings (as of September 11 before Windies’ one-off ODI against Ireland and series against England; India versus Australia series.
1st South Africa –119 pts., 2nd Australia –117 pts., 3rd India – 117 pts., 4th England –113 pts., 5th New Zealand –111 pts., 6th Pakistan — 95 pts., 7th Bangladesh — 94 pts., 8th Sri Lanka — 86 pts., 9th West Indies — 78 pts., 10th – Afghanistan — 54 pts., 11th Zimbabwe — 52 pts., and 12th Ireland — 41 pts.