Dubai. The 2014 World Twenty20 tournament in Bangladesh will be expanded from 12 to 16 teams, giving a boost to associate members who want more involvement in the shortest format of the game, the International Cricket Council said on Monday.
The move comes less than a year after the ICC angered the associate members by refusing to expand this year’s tournament in Sri Lanka. The expanded tournament means the 10 full members will be joined by six qualifiers from the 95 remaining cricketing nations.
The board also approved three more Twenty20 internationals to be played in the years in which the World Twenty20 is scheduled. Current rules limit the number of T20 internationals to a maximum of 12 per team.
“What excites me is the decision to extend the World Twenty20 event, which takes place in 2014 in Bangladesh,” ICC chief executive Haroon Lorgat said. “I’m sure that is very comforting to all associate [members] … It provides them with a greater chance of competing on the global stage.”
However, the board postponed a decision on the Woolf report, which calls for a sweeping reforms of the ICC, until its next meeting in June.
The 68-page report, which was presented to the board earlier this year, calls for overhauling the sport’s governing body to ensure the ICC is no longer “a club” for the test playing nations. Instead, the ICC should be “positioned and empowered to promote, develop and act in the best interests of the international game as a whole,” the report concludes.
Among its 65 recommendations are several that would reduce the influence of test-playing nations.
It calls for restructuring the ICC’s executive board to make it independent and give a greater voice to associate and affiliate nations. Currently, the 10 full members are the only ones with a vote on the board but the report recommends adding three independent, voting members and an independent chairman to lead the board.