India Pitted Against Hosts Sri Lanka In ICC Women's World Cup Qualifiers

December 20, 2016

With 50 days to go for the start of the tournament, the International Cricket Council (ICC) on Monday (December 19) announced the schedule for the ICC Women's World Cup Qualifiers 2017.

The tournament is set to start on February 7 and will go on till February 21, played across four venues in Sri Lanka's capital Colombo. India, who recently won the Women's Asia Cup, are in Group A alongside hosts Sri Lanka, Ireland, Zimbabwe and Thailand. In Group B, South Africa are pitted against Pakistan, Bangladesh, Scotland and Papua New Guinea. Each team will play a warm-up match ahead of the tournament, on February 5.

Once the tournament gets underway, every side will play a match each against every other team in its group, and the three top teams from each group will qualify for the Super Six stage. The sides finishing in the top four of the Super Six stage will join defending champion Australia, host England, former winner New Zealand and reigning ICC World Twenty20 champion West Indies in the ICC Women's World Cup 2017, to be played from 26 June to 23 July. These teams have secured automatic qualification on the basis of finishing as the top four side of the ICC Women's Championship.

The final of the qualifiers will be played at the Colombo Cricket Club Ground, while the semi-finals will be played at the P Sara Oval and Colombo Cricket Club Ground. NCC Cricket Stadium and Mercantile Cricket Association Ground are the other venues where the group stage and Super Six matches will be staged.

"The top four sides from the Super Six stage will not only qualify for the ICC Women's World Cup 2017, but they will also secure places in the next edition of the ICC Women's Championship," Holly Covlin, ICC's Women's Cricket Officer, said. "There is incentive for the remaining two sides from the Super Six stage, which will secure ODI status for the next four years. As such, there is plenty to play for in Colombo.

"The ICC World Twenty20 in India and the ICC Women's Championship have shown that the gap between the top-ranked sides is narrowing. The ICC Women's World Cup Qualifier will create more opportunities for women's cricketers to compete at the highest level and at the same time prepare for a high profile event like the ICC Women's World Cup."

The Women's World Cup 2017 will get underway on June 26, with the final being played at Lord's on July 23. Bristol and Derby will host the two semi-finals. The tournament will be played on a single-league format with all the eight sides playing against each other once. The top four sides will progress to the semi-finals. A total of 31 matches will be played at Lord's, Bristol, Derby, Leicester and Taunton.


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