LONDON, CMC – Two-time winners West Indies will open their 2019 World cup campaign against nemeses Pakistan, in their bid for a third title in the International Cricket Council’s premier 50-overs showpiece.
While the world governing body is set to officially unveil the full schedule of the event on Thursday, the fixtures were leaked on Wednesday for the May 30 to July 14 tournament in England and Wales.
West Indies will take on Pakistan in Nottingham on May 31, having not beaten the Asian side in a bilateral series in 27 years, and winning just four of the last 19 ODIs against them.
The Caribbean side will clash with world champions Australia on June 6 also in Nottingham before facing South Africa four days later in Southampton.
Jason Holder’s side will then do battle with hosts England on June 14 also in Southampton and take on Bangladesh in Taunton three days later.
The Windies will lock horns with New Zealand (June 22) and India (June 27) in two Manchester fixtures, battle Sri Lanka at Chester-le-Street on July 1 before wrapping up their preliminary campaign on July 4 against Afghanistan in Leeds.
All 10 teams will play each other in the preliminaries with the top four progressing to the semi-finals carded for Manchester and Birmingham on July 9 and 11.
West Indies will not play a single game at the historic Oval in London, where most of the their traditional Caribbean support can be found. However, the ground will be the scene of the tournament opener between England and South Africa.
The Oval will be one of 11 venues utilised, with Lord’s, Edgbaston, Trent Bridge, Headingley, Old Trafford, Taunton, Bristol, Chester-le-Street, Southampton and Cardiff, all hosting matches.
West Indies missed out on automatic qualification for the World Cup for the first time, after finding themselves outside the top eight in the ODI rankings at the cut-off date of September 30 last year.
They sealed their spot at the tournament, however, after finishing second behind Afghanistan in last month’s 10-team qualifier in Zimbabwe.