ICC tweaks test championship rules, shifts women's T20 World Cup

World Test Championship to exclude virus-hit matches

Australia has leapfrogged India in the ICC Test Championship table after the International Cricket Council confirmed on Thursday that the points system-due to a plethora of series postponed as a result of Covid-19 pandemic- to determine the finalists of the inaugural WTC will be amended.

So far just under half the scheduled matches have been played, with abandoned fixtures treated as a draw.

The change in WTC rule, prompted by the disruption caused by the COVID-19 pandemic, allowed Australia (82.22%) to leapfrog India (75) to the top of the standings even though Virat Kohli's men had accumulated more points.

ICC in a press release said "In case of exceptional circumstances, a Member Board could apply to the ICC to grant permission to a player under the age of 15 to play for them".

The 0-2 loss in New Zealand seems to have hurt India's chances and the home series against England next year will be crucial to their hopes of a final berth.

The ICC board approved a recommendation from its cricket committee, headed by Anil Kumble, to change the terms for the event.

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"We explored a whole range of options, but our Members felt strongly that we should proceed as planned with the first ever World Test Championship Final in June next year". This implies that the ICC's Anti-Corruption Unit can impose an exclusion order on known corruptors which will prevent them "preventing them from any involvement in cricket activities including playing, administration, financing, attendance or any kind of involvement in a league, team or franchise".

Since the pandemic has resulted in the postponement of the Women's ODI World Cup, the ICC Board made a decision to postpone the Women's T20 World Cup, shifting it from the end of 2022 to February, 2023.

With the postponement of the World Cup to 2022 and with women's cricket being included in the 2022 edition of the Commonwealth Games in Birmingham, the schedule would have been jam-packed heading into the World T20 in November 2022.

The latest investment in venue upgrades follows an initial United States dollars 7.3 million World Cup Accessible Venues Fund announced as part of the USD 265 million Sport Recovery Package, which also covered the investments for upgrades of the venues of the 2021 Rugby World Cup and the 2023 FIFA Women's World Cup.

Cricket Wellington CEO Cam Mitchell says: "We're delighted to have been able to upgrade the facilities here at the Basin to ensure that they are suitable for all players that attend our ground, not just at the World Cup but for future women's domestic and global matches".

In a significant decision, the International Cricket Council (ICC) has introduced a "minimum age policy" for players to play international cricket to "improve safeguarding of players".

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