The Cricket World Cup has certainly snuck up on us, with the recent footy finals series in Australia posing a fairly large distraction.
But with most of that now behind us, attention turns to one of world sport’s major events.
The boom of T20 cricket in recent years has undoubtedly taken some of the shine off the ICC’s major ODI tournament.
But nonetheless, if this instalment is anything like the one we witnessed four years ago, strap all the way in and get set for another gripping and competitive Cricket World Cup.
Cricket World Cup details: When, where, tickets, how to watch
When does the Cricket World Cup start?
Thursday October 5, 2023 | England vs New Zealand
Heavyweights England and New Zealand will, in fact, kick off the tournament, not the host nation. Organisers have gone for a rematch of the 2019 World Cup Final and you can be sure to be reminded of it about three thousand times during the match broadcast.
India’s campaign will get under way in a blockbuster clash with the Aussies on the Sunday October 8.
Where is the Cricket World Cup?
10 different venues across India (check them all out here) will host matches. That’s going to mean spin-friendly pitches and normally high-scoring games as well, which will keep the entertainment value nice and high.
The Final will be played at Narendra Modi Stadium in Ahmedabad on Sunday November 19.
Cricket World Cup tickets
Tickets for every match of the tournament can be found here.
How to watch the Cricket World Cup in Australia
Who are the defending champions?
As referenced above, England won the final of all finals at Lord’s in 2019. The hosts edged out New Zealand in a 50-over match that had a bit of absolutely everything. It ended in wild and somewhat controversial scenes. The Black Caps were famously gracious in defeat.
While the Aussies have only won one of the last three World Cups, take a slightly larger step back and you’ll see they’ve still claimed four of the last six. They’re the team to beat, if it’s not host nation India. That’s what makes their clash on the first weekend so huge.
Given the tournament’s played on pitched that encourages more spin bowling, flexibility will be important and the Aussies will have that in spades. The green and gold will try and pick a side that has batting strength down to eight, with a couple of all-rounders mixed into the side. And of course, there are several heavy-hitters that can jack up the run rate and aggressively close with authority in the final 10 overs of each batting innings.
Here’s the 15-man squad:
Pat Cummins (c), Steve Smith, Alex Carey, Josh Inglis, Sean Abbott, Marnus Labuschagne, Cameron Green, Josh Hazlewood, Travis Head, Mitch Marsh, Glenn Maxwell, Marcus Stoinis, David Warner, Adam Zampa, Mitchell Starc
David Warner has been great in the shorter format this year so far and looms as a crucial cog in Australia’s lineup.
Adam Zampa has a great opportunity to stick it to the IPL franchises – in India – that once again ignored him last season. He’s unquestionably good enough, but sadly for him, many teams opt for local spinning options to help reach the league’s requisite home grown quotas.
There’s plenty to play for, of course, and we can’t wait for it all to start unfolding.