The ICC World Cup 2023 schedule has been announced, and it will start on October 5, 2023. The ICC allowed eight teams to qualify for the World Cup this year. The eight top-ranked teams got a direct entrance to the ICC World Cup 2023. But there are still two slots left in the World Cup. So, the ICC gave a chance to all the associate members to put up a case for their inclusion in the ICC World Cup 2023. 10 teams played in the qualifying round, whose first stage is complete. Let’s discuss two possible names we can see in the upcoming World Cup.
ICC World Cup Qualifier Teams
The ICC announced that ten teams will take part in the ongoing ICC World Cup Qualifier Tournament, which will be played in the two cities of Zimbabwe, Harare and Bulawayo. These 10 teams are separated into two teams. Group A has Zimbabwe, Netherlands, West Indies, Nepal, and United States of America. On the other side, Group B has Sri Lanka, Scotland, Oman, Ireland, and the United Arab Emirates. All five teams have played against each other in this tournament to determine the three teams to enter the Super Sixes stage.
Group A Performance
Zimbabwe is the top team in Group A after winning all four games. Zimbabwe players showed their class in this ICC World Cup Qualifier and remained on top of their game throughout the tournament. The Netherlands surprised the whole world by defeating the West Indies in the Super Bowl. The Netherlands came in second on the points table by winning three out of four games. The former two-time World Champion West Indies performed poorly in this tournament, as the team could only win two matches.
Nepal played four games in the Cricket World Cup Qualifier and had a single victory. Nepal could only manage to beat the USA in the tournament. The worst performance came from the first-time entrants, the USA. The USA team played four games and could not secure a single victory in them. Both of these teams are out of contention now because of their pathetic performances. The top three teams; Zimbabwe, Netherlands, and West Indies qualified for the next stage, which is the Super Six stage.
Group B Performance
Group B has former World champion Sri Lanka at the top of the group stage. Sri Lanka was just marginally short of direct qualification for the World Cup. But their performance in the ICC World Cup Qualifier proved that they belong in the top 10 of the ICC World Cup. Sri Lanka won all four matches in this tournament. Scotland becomes the second team in Group B after winning three games out of four. Scotland’s team showed their class in this tournament. Oman is the third team in Group B.
Oman was the relevant team in the ICC World Cup Qualifier. Oman won two games out of the four it played. Oman, Sri Lanka, and Scotland qualified for the next phase of the tournament, which is the super six phase. The two teams that could not stay in the hunt for a World Cup inclusion are Ireland and the UAE. Ireland beat UAE with authority, which was their only win in the ICC World Cup Qualifier. The UAE could not get a single victory in the tournament. Four teams; UAE, Ireland, USA, and Nepal will play for the 7th and 9th positions.
World Cup Qualifier Super Six Stage
The top six teams of the two groups will play against each other one more round, which is known as the super six. All the teams from Group A will play against all the teams from Group B, and vice versa. It will count the two points and the run rate for each team. After the completion of the Super Six round, the top two teams will play in the final. Both finalist teams will qualify for the playoffs. Which two teams will qualify for the playoffs?
Predicting the Two Teams Qualifying for the Playoffs
The ICC World Cup Qualifier saw many brilliant performances from key players from every country. There are surprising moments in the qualifier, like the Netherlands beating the West Indies in the super over, and many more. However, there are two teams that will remain on top in our view. In our view, Sri Lanka and Zimbabwe will qualify for the ICC World Cup in 2023. There is a strong chance that they will play in the final of this ICC World Cup Qualifying Tournament. Here we will discuss the performance of these two teams.
Performance of Zimbabwe
Zimbabwe remained a top team in this tournament, much to the surprise of some cricket fans due to the dominance it showed. Zimbabwe started the tournament with an eight-wicket victory against Nepal. In the second match, Zimbabwe beat the Netherlands by six wickets when it chased down a target of 326 in just 41 overs. Zimbabwe bowled brilliantly against the West Indies and beat the team by 35 runs. In the last group stage game, Zimbabwe decimated the USA team by 304 runs. Zimbabwe scored 408 runs in this match.
Sean Williams is the top scorer of the tournament with 532 runs, including three centuries. He scored 174 and 142 runs in the last two games. Sikandar Raza is the second-highest run scorer for Zimbabwe, as he scored 260 runs in this tournament, including a century. Captain Craig Ervine remained the 3rd-best batter with 243 runs, which also included a hundred-plus-run inning. Richard Ngarva is the top wicket-taker in Zimbabwe with 10 wickets. Sikandar Raza took eight wickets to remain on second for Zimbabwe.
Performance of Sri Lanka
The Sri Lankan team started the tournament with a 175-run victory over the UAE team. In the second match, Sri Lanka beat Oman by 10 wickets when they chased down the 99-run target in just 15 overs. Sri Lanka beat Ireland by 133 runs in the third group stage match. The last group stage match saw Sri Lanka beat Scotland by 82 runs. Sri Lanka dominated Group B and took all the victories by great margins. Their players performed superbly in this ICC World Cup Qualifier.
Dimuth Karunaratne is the top scorer for the team with 223 runs. He also scored a century in this tournament. Pathum Nissanka is the second-best batter on the team with 189 runs in the four matches. The bowling unit has been extremely competent in the tournament. Wanindu Hasranga is the top wicket-taker of the tournament with 18 wickets in four games. He was tough to pick for batters who tried different things against him and lost their wickets. Lahiru Kumara is the second-best wicket-taker with just six wickets.
So, Sri Lanka and Zimbabwe have the best chance to play in India later this year for the ICC World Cup 2023. What do you think? Let us know in the comments section.