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Deutrom: Decision to exclude Ireland from 2015 World Cup a "complete travesty" and an "outrage"

Cricket Ireland’s chief executive slams ICC decision as “nothing but an attempt by full members to protect their own privileges.”

Image: ©INPHO/Sportzpics

CHIEF EXECUTIVE OF Cricket Ireland Warren Deutrom has labelled the ICC’s decision to exclude Ireland from the 2015 Cricket World Cup as an “absolute outrage.”

Earlier today, the sport’s governing body met in Mumbai in order to finalise the qualfication process for the 2015 tournament which will take place in Australia and New Zealand.

Although the tournament won by India last weekend was contested by 14 countries, it was seen by some as overly long, prompting the ICC to decide last October that the next two World Cups should only be contested by ten teams.

This decision was reaffirmed by an ICC statement this afternoon which stated that only the ten test-playing nations would compete in 2015 while promising that a formal qualification process would be introduced prior to the 2019 tournament which will be hosted in England.

The decision comes as a huge blow to Irish cricket which had hoped to kick on from an impressive showing at the World Cup and further the development of the game in this country.

Speaking to TheScore.ie shortly after the release of the ICC statement, Deutrom slammed the decision as  ”a complete travesty which flies in the face of every equitable sporting principle and which flies in the face of the performance of Ireland and the other associate nations at the World Cup.”

In a word, Cricket Ireland and the other 95 non-test playing nations are absolutely outraged by this decision. This is nothing but an attempt by the full members to protect their own privileges.

Ireland’s performance in defeating both England and the Netherlands in their Group B pool games was sufficient to see the country move into the top ten in the ICC’s official rankings – yet, as an incredulous Deutrom explained, today’s decision means that Zimbabwe (who are currently ranked 11th) will be guaranteed a spot at the 2015 showpiece while Ireland and others will not even have the opportunity to qualify.

Ireland is currently ranked tenth in the world, above one of the ten test-playing nations, a fact which has been completely disregarded.

I said before the World Cup that I would like to have seen the decision postponed until after the tournament had been played. That would have provided the ICC with an opportunity to make a full and fair assessment of all the evidence. Not only did they not do that but they have now completely disregarded all of the evidence provided by the tournament.

Although no decision has yet been taken regarding an appeal of today’s decision, Deutrom was adamant that this course of action will be seriously considered by Cricket Ireland and the other non-test playing countries in the coming days.

“We haven’t made any decision yet as to what our next step will be, ” he said,  ”but I can assure you that it is something that we will be looking at very, very closely with the other non-test nations over the next few days.”

Whatever avenue Cricket Ireland chooses to pursue will be done in unison with the other 94 non-test playing countries. What people have to understand is that there are 105 members of the ICC and more than 90% of them have been disenfranchised by today’s decision.

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Niall Kelly

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