The three most unpredictable W’s in UK. Weather, Work and Woman – Guess ICC wasn’t aware of the first W.

The three most unpredictable W’s in UK. Weather, Work and Woman. Women are unpredictable round the world and your work sucks anyway, but it’s the weather that has been the talk of the town lately which ICC probably ‘forgot’ to take an account of and therefore cricket world cup 2019 is suffering big time.

The incessant down pouring has become a deterrent for the cricket world cup 2019. A record third world cup match had to be abandoned due to bad weather and poor scheduling of the tournament. So far, CWC 2019 has faced 2 complete washouts (Pak vs Sri, on 7th June and BD vs Sri, on 11th June, at Bristol) and 1 match abandoned after just 7.3 overs of play (SA vs WI, 10th June, Southampton). There is still more rain to come which means more matches to be affected.

Previously, the highest number of abandoned matches was 2 (1992 and 2003 each). What didn’t happen in 40 years (from 1975 – 2015), happened in a matter of 5 days in Bristol. All of this is exasperating for both the players and the fans alike.

Bangladesh captain, Mashrafe Mortaza expressed his annoyance:

“There is a lot of frustration for all teams – coming to the ground and not playing is disappointing,”

Continuous washouts are most definitely frustrating and disappointing. There is a lot of talk and probing on ICC’s lack of prudence and poor display of planning (or the lack of it).

The first thing that comes to mind is why didn’t ICC keep reserve days when they were well aware of the weather conditions across UK.

Bangladesh coach, Steve Rhodes commented:

“We put men on the moon so why can’t we have a reserve day? I know that it would have been difficult, but we have got quite a lot of time in between games, and if we have got to travel a day later, then so be it.”

The ICC’s head of events Chris Tetley told BBC 5 Live that:

“Scheduling reserve days for each stage of the tournament would inevitably extend the length of the event, which isn’t necessarily something that people want”.

Only the Semi-final and final of the tournament have a reserve day. Well, fair enough. But then come to think of all the resources ICC has. The lack of foresight, with ICC having no contingency plans regarding the weather at this time of the year is baffling. ICC should have taken extraordinary measures to ensure smooth flow of the biggest tournament of cricket. Case in point: PSL 2019 in Pakistan.

Pakistan, with all its critical situations and unforeseen circumstances, managed to reschedule the entire Pakistan leg of PSL 2019 from Lahore to Karachi in a matter of one week. It is required to mention that Pakistan had a much-aggravated setback that developed unexpectedly, (Military tensions between India and Pakistan), which definitely could not be foretold unlike the similar weather conditions every year in UK, yet Pakistan effectively managed to make timely changes and successfully conducted the league. If PCB, with its limited resources could do that for a national league, why can’t ICC, with all its expanded resources, chart out alternatives to overcome a problem (which should have been taken into consideration already) for the biggest international cricket tournament.

It’s perplexing how ICC is acting all callous with this tournament. They could have reserved the following unconventional plans had they anticipated back-to-back completely abandoned matches (with more rain to follow).

Quick shift of the venue (London was bright and sunny while other areas had rain), utilizing the number of strips available at the bigger grounds (4 each at The Oval and Lords, consecutive matches at the same venue are possible), effective refund and selling of tickets in case of change of venues (Exhibit: PSL 2019, all Lahore matches shifted to Karachi), better equipment and preparation to dry the wet grounds (Exhibit: Pakistan once used 2 military helicopters to dry the wet pitch, for a national league match, at Qaddafi stadium in Lahore, 21st March 2018) or, just establish retractable roofs at your stadium to avoid the threat of rain washing off the all important matches (Inspiration: Al Wakrah stadium, Qatar)

These real life instances display the lengths at which the institutions have gone to ensure uninterrupted sport. English summers have always seen this much rain. It’s not like 2019 is a surprise for ICC. Weather, in this era, is well forecasted and English summers are known for notorious spells of rain. Yet, ICC failed to cater to the basic problem they failed to anticipate.

The continuous wash outs have lowered the excitement dramatically for the fans. It is costing valuable win points to the team, and, most importantly it has highlighted the privation of planning for such a huge tournament by ICC. Cricket world cup 2019 is displaying more controversies than highs, and the tournament still hasn’t even reached the middle. Cricket is more than just a sport for us therefore, such instances infuriate the true sport lovers and inevitably end up questioning the authorities.

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