Dave Richardson has defended the International Cricket Council (ICC)’s decision not to keep reserve days for matches during the league stage of the World Cup, saying it would increase the duration of the tournament.
“Factoring in a reserve day for every match at the ICC Men’s Cricket World Cup would significantly increase the length of the tournament and practically would be extremely complex to deliver,” the outgoing chief executive of the ICC said in a statement.
“It would impact pitch preparation, team recovery and travel days, accommodation and venue availability, tournament staffing, volunteer and match officials availability, broadcast logistics, and very importantly, the spectators who in some instances have travelled hours to be at the game.
“There is also no guarantee that the reserve day would be free from rain either.
“Up to 1200 people are on site to deliver a match and everything associated with it including getting it broadcast and a proportion of them are moving around the country, so reserve days in the group stage would require a significant uplift in the number of staff. We have reserve days factored in for the knock-out stages, knowing that over the course of 45 group games, we should play the large majority,” Richardson said.
“This is extremely unseasonable weather. In the last couple of days, we have experienced more than twice the average monthly rainfall for June, which is usually the third driest month in the UK.
“In 2018 there was just 2mm of rain in June, but the last 24 hours alone has seen around 100mm fall in the south east of England. When a match is affected by weather conditions, the venue team works closely with match officials and ground staff to ensure that we have the best possible opportunity to play cricket, even if it is a reduced-overs game.
“We also work to keep fans in the stadium, or those travelling to the game, as up-to-date as possible with any information we have, either through public announcements or on our social media channels.”
Richardson’s statement comes after three matches were washed out by rain and Bangladesh coach Steve Rhodes saying that there should be reserve days in the World Cup.