The World Cup is just 10 days away and things have started to get serious. Since the last major cricketing event was the Indian T20 League 2019, there is a need to get out of the 20 over style of play and switch on to the more relaxed ODI mode. That is where the official ICC Cricket World Cup warm up matches come into effect. Though some teams like hosts England, Pakistan and Sri Lanka have preparatory camps that are ongoing, the warm-up games, expected to give teams a better feel of the competition and pitches have been finalized and with it, the official broadcasters of the tournament across the world. ICC has confirmed that all 10 warm up matches will be telecast live.
All ten competing nations will play two official warm-up fixtures ahead of the tournament, which will take place at four venues across England and Wales. The fixtures will be held over five days between 24th & 28th May, and will be hosted at four of the official CWC19 Tournament Venues; the Bristol County Ground, Cardiff Wales Stadium, Hampshire Bowl and The Oval.
There are two warmup matches scheduled each day and the Indian team will play their two games on May 25th (vs New Zealand) and May 28th (vs Bangladesh) respectively. These matches are all day affairs and will begin at 03.00pm IST.
As per previous ICC tournaments, warm-up fixtures will be 50 over per side, but will not carry official ODI status, as teams can field all members of their 15-man squad during the match.
The warm-up matches will give the teams the opportunity to get accustomed to the playing conditions in England and also a chance to fine-tune their playing XIs. Also, with regard to these matches, the teams are free to experiment with their lineups and test players for fitness issues.
The 2019 edition of the World Cup is going to be a radically different version from 2015 and these warm up matches will go a long way in preparing teams for what lies ahead. There are only 10 teams that will be competing for the prize down from 14 four years ago. All of the teams will play each other once in the group stage and the top-4 sides qualify for the semi-finals. The top team after the group stage will play the fourth team in one semi-final while the second and the third team will play each other in the other semi-final. The winner of the semi-final will play each other in the final. This format ensures that each side plays the same opponents to determine which the best four sides are. It is similar to the 1992 World Cup format in most regards.
For Indian fans, all the matches will be telecast on Star Sports. Matches will also be streamed live on Hotstar for fans who are unable to watch on TV. However, users are compelled to pay subscription fees to access all World Cup-related content on the Hotstar app and the website.
Recently, Star TV Network’s Executive VP, Sanjog Gupta confirmed the same on Twitter. He tweeted, “10 warm-up matches (including both India warm-ups) will be aired live. 2 each on 24th, 25th, 26th, 27th & 28th (India plays on 25th and 28th).”
ICC Cricket World Cup 2019 Managing Director, Steve Elworthy, said: “It is always a huge milestone announcing an exciting warm-up schedule for the ICC Men’s Cricket World Cup as it really highlights just how close we are to the action getting underway this summer.
“These games provide another fantastic opportunity for fans to see world-class players at their local venue and allows the tournament to engage local schools and communities with another chance to get involved with the Cricket World Cup.”
BROADCAST CHANNELS AND LIVE STREAMING
While Star Sports network will telecast in India and other Sub Continent Countries, Fox Sports reserves the telecast rights for Australia. Live streaming will be available on Hotstar and Foxtel – respective OTT platforms .
Full Member Nations
Afghanistan – Moby TV & Hotstar
Australia – Fox Sports, Channel 9, Kayo Live Stream, SEN Radio & Macquarie Sports Radio
Bangladesh – BTV, GTV, Maasranga, Rabbitholebd & Bangladesh Betar (Radio)
England – Sky Sports, SkyGo, NowTV & BBC Radio
India – Star Sports Network, Doordarshan, Hotstar & All India Radio
Ireland – Sky Sports, NowTV & BBC Radio
New Zealand – Sky Sports Nz & SkyGo Fan Pass
Pakistan – Ten Cricket, PTV Sports & SonyLiv
South Africa – Super Sports & SuperSport App
Sri Lanka – Ten Sports, SLRC Channel Eye & Hotstar
West Indies/Caribbean Islands – ESPN & ESPN Play
Zimbabwe – SuperSports & SuperSport App
Asia Central Region – Hotstar Website & App
Canada – ATN Cricket Plus
Europe – Hotstar Website & App
Hong Kong – Star Cricket & Now TV
Malaysia – Fox International & Astro Go
The Middle East – OSN CricHD, Eleven Sports & Wavo Stream
North Africa – OSN
North America – ESPN
Oceania – Digicel & Digicel Play
Scotland – Sky Sports, SkyGo & Now TV
Singapore – Star Cricket, Star Hub Go & Singtel
South American Countries – ESPN Website, ESPN Brazil (Stream) & ESPN Play South
Sub-Saharan Africa – Super Sports
United Arab Emirates – OSN & Wavo
United States of America – Willow TV
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