New Delhi | Jagran Sports Desk: The International Cricket Council has officially launched the ODI super league, a qualifier series that will facilitate entry to ICC Men’s Cricket World Cup 2023. The inaugural match of the series will begin with a contest between World champions England and Ireland on July 30 in Southampton. The rest of the schedule will be announced later.

The ICC's 12 full members and the Netherlands will play four home and away three-match ODI series. The top seven teams will automatically book spots at the 2023 World Cup in India. The five sides which fail to qualify directly will play along with five Associate sides in the Qualifier 2023, with two teams making it to the 10-team World Cup in India.

Hosts India and the next top seven teams in the Super League will automatically qualify for the World Cup, the ICC said in a press release.

Commenting on the launch, Geoff Allardice, ICC General Manager - Cricket Operations said, "We are delighted to get the ICC Men's Cricket World Cup Super League underway with world cup winners England against Ireland.

"The league will bring relevance and context to ODI cricket over the next three years, as a qualification for the ICC Men's Cricket World Cup 2023 is at stake. The Super League gives cricket fans around the world even more reasons to watch as the drama of league cricket unfolds."

He also said that the ICC's decision to postpone the ODI world cup to 2023 will give more time to schedule matches that were affected due to COVID-19 pandemic.

"The decision last week to move the World Cup back to late 2023 gives us more time to schedule any games lost due to COVID-19 and preserve the integrity of the qualification process, meaning it will be decided on the field of play, which is important," Allardice said.

 (with PTI inputs)

Posted By: Rakesh Kumar Jha