Four Associates to host Under-19 World Cups

Nepal, Namibia and Thailand will all host their first ICC World Cups, whilst Malaysia will become second-time hosts

Namibia U19

Four associate members will host editions of the ICC Under-19 World Cups over the coming 5 years, the ICC has announced. The four associations include Malaysia, Thailand, Nepal, and Namibia and will be co-hosting as a pair or in conjunction with a full member.

Sri Lanka will be the sole hosts of the 2024 Men’s U19 World Cup, but all three events thereafter will have at least one associate as a host.

Thailand will get their first opportunity to host a World Cup in 2025 when they co-host the Women’s U19 World Cup alongside neighbours Malaysia. But it will be the second time Malaysia has hosted an U19s World Cup, having previously hosted the 2008 Men’s tournament. The successful joint bid reflects the success of Thailand in women’s cricket over the past 5 years, as well as Malaysia’s youth participation programmes.

Nepal will also co-host the Women’s U19 World Cup, sharing hosting of the 2027 tournament with Bangladesh. Like Thailand, Nepal will host their first ICC World Cup, bringing World Cup cricket in front of Nepal’s masses of passionate fans.

The 2026 Men’s U19 World Cup will be shared between Zimbabwe and Namibia. The timing of this event is particularly noteworthy as the two nations will be co-hosting the men’s ODI World Cup alongside South Africa one year later. Since it comes ahead of hosting the senior equivalent, the Under-19’s event will be Namibia’s first time hosting an ICC event, and will serve as an excellent practice run for the following year’s tournament.

The ICC did not specify whether all the host nations would receive automatic qualification for their tournaments.

Additionally, the ICC elaborated on the qualification procedure for the 2027 ODI World Cup, co-hosted by South Africa, Zimbabwe, and Namibia. Whilst the two full-member hosts will receive automatic qualification, Namibia have been left out and will have to qualify via another method. The top 8 sides on the ICC ODI rankings (hosts excluded) at a date to be confirmed will qualify for the event. The remaining 4 berths will be determined by a qualifying tournament.

The ICC also indicated that the Women’s T20 World Cup global qualifier would expand to a 10-team event ahead of the 2024 event, to be hosted in Bangladesh. Two teams from the qualifier will join the hosts and 7 direct qualifiers based on performances at the 2023 event.

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