The International Cricket Council (ICC) is reportedly set to expand the 2027 Cricket World Cup to 14 teams that will include a dramatic return of the Super Six stage last seen in the 2003 World Cup. According to Telegraph Sport, ICC is looking towards bringing back the 14-team format in the 2027 edition of the Cricket World Cup with a view to expanding the sport, also increasing the total number of games from 48 to 54.
The change in the format has been will not be applicable for the 2023 World Cup, which will follow the same 10-team format used in 2019 World Cup. The ICC board meeting on Tuesday will see discussions regarding the change in format which, even if agreed during the meeting, could be confirmed later this year. Other possible changes might include increasing the number of ICC men’s global events from six to eight during the cycle, as the ICC and member countries will finalize the global calendar for 2023-2031. This could also see an introduction of Champions Trophy-style ODI competition being played.
With the top cricket teams’ belief that restricting the World Cup to 10 teams causes hindrance to the emerging nations, a 14-team tournament will help to make cricket an even bigger global tournament. The new format would be able to thrust the emerging nations a confidence boost by qualifying for the world cup and ensure enough high-stakes games are present in the tournament.
Despite the potential re-introduction of the 2003 model in 2027, it is understood that the 2019 model of the World Cup consisting of 10 teams was commercially beneficial compared while the model used in 2015 had very less financial outlay.
The model that comes second in terms of commercial worth, will boast a total of 14 teams divided equally into two groups, with each team playing six group games. As the top 3 teams of each group will proceed to the Super Sixes stage, the qualified teams will play three matches, one with each team of the other group before the top 4 further progressing to the semi-finals. With the format in effect, a total of 54 games will be played, instead of 48.