HomeNews"We are Preparing for It": Meg Lanning on 2021 Cricket World Cup

“We are Preparing for It”: Meg Lanning on 2021 Cricket World Cup

Australia captain Meg Lanning has backed the news that the decision on the future of the ICC Cricket World Cup will be taken soon. The marquee event is scheduled to take place next year in New Zealand. However, Australia will try to win the trophy again in 2021 which they couldn’t in 2017 after their shocking defeat to India in the semi-final.

While the International Cricket Council on Monday postponed the men’s 2020 T20 World Cup due to the COVID-19 pandemic, the fate of the women’s 50-over world cup remained unclear. But the ICC stated that they would continue to evaluate the situation as the tournament will go as per the plan before Greg Barclay, New Zealand Cricket chair shared that they will take a call in the next fortnight.

Meg Lanning, on the other hand, said that amid this lockdown in Melbourne she had continued her preparation even if the event would go ahead as per the plan from February 6, 2021.

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“You want to know one way or another whether it’s going ahead, and fingers crossed things continue to improve around the world and the tournament can go ahead,” Lanning told reporters.

She further added, “In an ideal world you’d like to get (certainty) … but I understand there’s a lot of complexities involved in the situation from week to week and who knows what the situation’s going to be in a few months’ time.

So it would be a very difficult job for the organisers to work out what the best plan of attack is. But as players we’re just preparing for it to go ahead and we’ll just wait for the decision to be made … and make sure we’re ready to go if that’s the case.”

Meg Lanning
Meg Lanning. ©Getty Images

However, New Zealand have successfully stopped the community spread of the COVID-19, and the men’s T20 event postponement in Australia has raised hopes for the 50-over tournament. While the crowd has returned to the sporting events in the nation, it has raised a few questions as well including the cost and logistical implications of getting seven teams into New Zealand during the COVID-19.

Meg Lanning said that she would play the tournament if it takes place early next year, trusting the ICC and New Zealand organising committee to arrange everything with all the necessary safety measures. As the global pandemic has hit all the events across the globe, it will affect the preparation of the teams for the mega event.

“There’s a few more decisions to be made around it rather than whether it can just go ahead or not. It’s a pretty difficult position to be in, but as a player you want things to be as equal and fair as they can be heading into a big world tournament and I’m sure the organisers will make sure that happens,” added the right-hand batter.

As of now, only Australia, New Zealand, South Africa and England have series in their plate for the rest of 2020, while India have pulled out from the tri-series in England, involving South Africa. However, they will visit Australia in January.

Meg Lanning
Meg Lanning. ©T20WorldCup

Meanwhile, the qualifying event for the tournament which had been scheduled to take place in Sri Lanka was postponed which left only five of the eight teams have been confirmed currently. Although ESPNcricinfo understands that if the World Cup still goes ahead, the qualifiers might take place in the UAE during November. Bangladesh, Ireland, Pakistan, West Indies, Ireland, Thailand, Zimbabwe, Papua New Guinea, USA and Netherlands will compete for the remaining three spots for the World Cup.

“That’s something the ICC are going to have to weigh up in terms of whether the tournament goes ahead. Will every team in the competition have an opportunity to prepare adequately for a World Cup?

“That’s a decision they’ve got to make and there’ll still a few teams who have to go through the qualifying process to work out who’s even going to be at the World Cup, so I’m not sure how that’s going to pan out either. (So) there’s a few more decisions to be made around it, not just simply whether it can go ahead or not,” Meg Lanning expressed.

New Zealand’s tour to Australia includes three T20Is in Sydney, followed by three ODIs in Townsville, Cairns and the Gold Coast in Queensland.

“The planning is for that to still go ahead as scheduled, there needs to be flexibility around things if they change but from what I’ve heard still planning for that to happen which is really great for the players to look forward to and an end point to pre-season,” Lanning concluded.



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