West Indies in tough World Cup pool

DUBAI, United Arab Emirates, CMC- West Indies are in a tough pool for the next International Cricket Council (ICC) World Cup to be staged in Australia and New Zealand in 2015.

The Windies are in pool B that includes top ranked sides South Africa, India and Pakistan as well as Zimbabwe, Ireland and Qualifier 4.

Pool A involves England, Australia, Sri Lanka, Bangladesh, New Zealand, Qualifier 2 and Qualifier 3.

The ICC announced on Tuesday that the tournament will be staged from 14 February to 29 March, and India will begin its title defence against traditional rival Pakistan in Adelaide on 15 February.

“World Cup is a very special event for every cricketer because it only takes place every four years. Having tasted success in Mumbai in 2011, we’ll be working very hard to retain it,” said India captain Mahendra Singh Dhoni.

“I’m keenly looking forward to the tournament and confident that we’ll do well. Our recent victory in the ICC Champions Trophy 2013 has provided the team with a lot of confidence, and I am sure this experience will help us in our preparations for the World Cup in 2015.”

The tournament opens on 14 February with co-hosts Australia and New Zealand playing their first matches on the opening day in front of their home crowds, while the Melbourne Cricket Ground (MCG) will host the final on 29 March.

New Zealand will square off against 1996 champion Sri Lanka in the tournament opener in Christchurch, while later on the same day, under the Melbourne Cricket Ground (MCG) floodlights, four-time former champion Australia will go head-to-head with arch rival England.

“The ICC Cricket World Cup is the flagship tournament of the 50-over game,” said ICC Chief Executive David Richardson.

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