South Africa to play Sri Lanka in ICC T20 World Cup 2023 opener
Australia celebrating their fifth T20 World Cup title © ICC
The International Cricket Council (ICC) has announced the fixtures for the T20 World Cup 2023 on Monday (October 3). The hosts South Africa will take on Sri Lanka in the opening fixture on February 10 in Cape Town and the final of the tournament will be played on February 26 at the same venue. India will start their campaign with the match against Pakistan on February 12.
With Bangladesh and Ireland qualifying for the global event after reaching the final of the ICC T20 World Cup Qualifier in UAE, the ten participating teams are divided into two groups. Group 1 will feature defending champions Australia, New Zealand, South Africa, Sri Lanka, and Bangladesh, while Group 2 have runners-up from T20 World Cup 2020 India competing against England, West Indies, Pakistan and Ireland.
Like in the previous four events, ten teams will play 23 matches across three venues - Cape Town, Paarl and Gqeberha. Reserve days are available for both the semi-finals and the final.
“We are thrilled to be announcing the match schedule for the next ICC Women’s T20 World Cup as we look to build on the success of Australia 2020 and host a uniquely African celebration of cricket,” , Geoff Allardice, ICC CEO said.
“As a key strategic priority for the sport, women’s cricket continues to build momentum and engage more fans than ever before. With T20 as the growth vehicle for cricket we are confident that this event and the inaugural U19 Women’s T20 World Cup preceding the senior event will leave a lasting legacy to grow girls and women’s cricket around the world.”
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Former India captain Mithali Raj was present at the launch event as an ICC ambassador. The 39-year-old said she is excited about watching some quality cricket as women’s cricket continues to grow.
“The announcement of the schedule takes us one step closer to the Women’s T20 World Cup. This has been a fantastic period for the growth of the women’s game, and I am sure fans in South Africa will be out in huge numbers to support the players,” Raj said.
“I am fortunate to have had the opportunity to participate in ICC tournaments over the years and know what they mean to players globally. I can’t wait to watch some fast-paced, high-energy cricket and closely-fought, exciting matches.”
Cricket South Africa (CSA) chief executive Pholetsi Moseki added that tickets will be priced in such a way that it will give access to all the South Africans attend the matches and support the home team.
“South Africa is eagerly awaiting the opening match against Sri Lanka, which will further confirm our competitiveness on the field of play. It will also mark an historic occasion of South Africa hosting the ICC Women’s T20 World Cup, and a first-ever chance for our fans to experience the attractive blend of women’s cricket that will be beamed across the globe,” Moseki said.
“This happens at the time that the appetite for women’s cricket, as a distinct brand, is gaining traction amongst the fans. We have sliced the prices of tickets to allow all the fans the opportunity to attend stadiums and join in the excitement, which will confirm that women’s cricket is open for business.”
Schedule for T20 World Cup 2023:
February 10 South Africa v Sri Lanka, Cape Town
February 11 West Indies v England, Paarl
Australia v New Zealand, Paarl
February 12 India v Pakistan, Cape Town
Bangladesh v Sri Lanka, Cape Town
February 13 Ireland v England, Paarl
South Africa v New Zealand, Paarl
February 14 Australia v Bangladesh, Gqeberha
February 15 West Indies v India, Cape Town
Pakistan v Ireland, Cape Town
February 16 Sri Lanka v Australia, Gqeberha
February 17 New Zealand v Bangladesh, Cape Town
West Indies v Ireland, Cape Town
February 18 England v India, Gqeberha
South Africa v Australia, Gqeberha
February 19 Pakistan v West Indies, Paarl
New Zealand v Sri Lanka, Paarl
February 20 Ireland v India, Gqeberha
February 21 England v Pakistan, Cape Town
South Africa v Bangladesh, Cape Town
February 23 SEMI-FINAL 1, Cape Town
February 24 RESERVE DAY
February 24 SEMI-FINAL 2, Cape Town
February 25 RESERVE DAY, Cape Town
February 26 FINAL, Cape Town
February 27 RESERVE DAY, Cape Town