2020 was a tough year for the world all around and cricket wasn’t immune to this year as well. The T20 World Cup was scheduled to happen in November last year in Australia but was postponed and will now be held in India in 2021. While 2020 wasn’t ideal for all sporting personalities and the fans, 2021 comes with a ray of hope and promises a lot. As we step ahead in the new decade, here are the top cricketing events from 2021 to look out for.
ENGLAND’S TOUR OF INDIA (February – March)
The Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) along with the England and Wales Cricket Board (ECB) announced a marquee series between these two top teams in India. The series will kickstart with four Test matches, with the first two being played at Chennai. The last two Tests will be played at the newly-built Sardar Patel Motera Stadium in Ahmedabad which is currently the largest cricket stadium in the world. The third Test will be a Day and Night match and will be played under lights with a pink ball. The outcome of the Test series can prove a crucial point for both the teams’ hopes of qualifying for the World Test Championship final.
The Test series will be followed by a grilling five-match T20I series which will also be held at Ahmedabad. The last leg of the tour will end with a three-match ODI series at Pune.
INDIAN T20 LEAGUE 2021 (April – May)
After the 2020 Indian T20 League was relocated to the United Arab Emirates (UAE), fans can’t wait to have the premier T20 tournament in the world back where it belongs – India. Team Mumbai will be defending their titles and will be eager to become the first-ever team to win the trophy in three consecutive seasons. This will be the last season when there will be an eight-team tournament as the BCCI announced that the 2022 season will comprise 10 teams.
WORLD TEST CHAMPIONSHIP FINAL (June)
The inaugural season of the World Test Championship will see the two top sides at the end of the league on the percentage points table contesting the final at the home of cricket, Lord’s. Each series of the league is worth 120 points, distributed evenly over the number of matches in a series, ranging from 60 for each match of a two-Test series to 24 for each match of a five-Test series.
The international governing body had to change the competition terms for the event to determine how series affected by the global pandemic are accounted for on the points table. Currently, India, New Zealand and Australia are favourites to finish in the top two spots in the table.
INDIA’S TOUR OF ENGLAND (August-September)
August 2021 will see India travel to England to play a five-match Test series. Last time India played on the English shore, they lost the five-match Test series 4-1. Virat Kohli and his men will have redemption on their mind going into this series. With both these teams already clashing earlier in the year on a prolonged tour, the narrative for this Test series will be set up beautifully.
ICC Men’s T20 WORLD CUP (October-November)
Finally, the big one! The latest edition of the ICC Men’s T20 World Cup will be held in India. The format of the World Cup will remain the same as it was scheduled for in 2020 and all teams that qualified for the event will now participate in India in 2021. The previous edition of the T20 World Cup in 2016 was also held in India and the West Indies triumphed that time around. They will yet again be title contenders for this edition along with other major teams as well.
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