ICC World Twenty20 2014 Format, Groups Unveiled
The ICC World Twenty20 2014 will run from 16th March to 6th April and reigning champions West Indies will begin their title defence against 2007 champions India.
The tournament has been expanded to include 16 teams for the first time and will include two phases - a qualifying phase, between 16th and 21st March to determine which two teams join the eight top-ranked side in the final 'Super 10' stage.
The tournament 'proper' gets underway on 21st March with former winners India and Pakistan clashing in Dhaka. The West Indies will play India two days later.
Group 1 of the Super 10 comprises 2012 runners-up Sri Lanka, 2010 champions England, 2007 hosts South Africa, New Zealand and the winner of Group B of the first stage with Group 2 including reigning champions West Indies, 2007 winners India, 2009 champions Pakistan, 2010 runners-up Australia and the winner of Group A of the first stage.
Bangladesh will play in Group A of the qualifying tournament along with three of the teams that make it through from the ICC World Twenty20 Qualifier in November and Zimbabwe will feature in Group B with the other three teams.
The Women's tournament, for the first time featuring 10 teams with Bangladesh and Ireland making their first appearances, will run alongside the men's tournament and as per previous events, the semi-finals and finals will be double-headers with the men's games.
Group A of the women's event comprises 2012 and 2010 champions Australia, 2009 and 2010 runners-up New Zealand, South Africa, Pakistan and Ireland while 2009 champions England are placed in Group B alongside West Indies, India, Sri Lanka and Bangladesh.
Chittagong, Dhaka and Sylhet will host the 60 matches (35 in the men's event and 25 in the women's) in the tournament.
At the launch ceremony in Dhaka, ICC General Manager - Commercial, Campbell Jamieson, said: "The ICC World Twenty20 is the pinnacle of Twenty20 International cricket as it brings together the world’s best cricketers in a short and sharp nation versus nation tournament.
"The successes of the previous editions in South Africa, England, the West Indies and Sri Lanka have proven the popularity of this tournament, and it is exciting that this event will now be staged in a country like Bangladesh which has a very proud cricketing tradition.
"Bangladesh hosted the ICC Champions Trophy in 1998 (then known as the ICC Knock-Out) and most recently the ICC Cricket World Cup 2011, along with India and Sri Lanka. Following the legacies of these two successful events, as well as the ICC U19 Cricket World Cup 2004, I’m confident that Bangladesh will once again produce a world-class tournament.
"As regards to tickets, these will go on sale from 10 November and both the ICC and the BCB have ensured the prices are affordable and maximum tickets are available to the general public.”
Bangladesh Cricket Board (BCB) President Nazmul Hassan added: "We are a cricket-crazy nation. The game of cricket is probably one of the strongest unifying factors in this country. Through cricket we showcase our passion, spread our message of harmony and welcome everyone with open arms to our land.
"With the launch of ticket sales and unveiling of the schedule we are inviting the people in Bangladesh and all around the globe to visit our stadiums, support their teams and to feel the spectacular mix of colours Dhaka, Sylhet and Chittagong offer.
"After all the action and the fanfare had subsided I hope you will have a lasting memory of this country and its hospitality."
© Cricket World 2013