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Central European Cup announced for 2021

The Central European Cup has been announced for 2021 and will be held in Prague. The tournament will take place between Friday 21st and Sunday 23rd May, with 12 T20Is played across the 3 days. Austria, Luxembourg, and Malta will join hosts Czech Republic in the event.

Austria are the strongest of the four sides based on the ICC T20I rankings at 38th, beating Czech Repulbic (60th) and Luxembourg (62nd) at the 2019 Continental Cup. Malta (69th) are the lowest ranked team in the tournament. All four nations will compete in the European regional qualifiers for the 2022 T20 World Cup later this summer. Malta will play in Group A, Luxembourg in Group B, whilst Czech Republic and Austria will meet in Group C.

This year’s Central European Cup marks the 7th running of the event. However, this year’s edition is the first to hold full T20I status for all matches. Previous editions up to 2018 were 50 over matches, whilst the 2019 event involved two non-members, Switzerland and Latvia. The 2020 edition was cancelled due to the COVID-19 pandemic. Czech Republic are defending champions having defeated Hungary in the final of the 2019 edition.

The two venues, the Banks Field and the Scott Page Field in Prague, have been upgraded to meet T20I standards. This means that these matches will be the first T20Is played in the Czech Republic.

The fixtures for the tournament were announced on Friday, with the 4 nations playing in a double round-robin format. Each team will therefore play 6 T20Is over the course of the three days.

The hosts have also announced their squad, and will be captained by Sudesh Wickramasekera, who hold the joint record for the fastest hundred in T20Is. Four uncapped players are included in the squad.

Further details will be announced closer to the event.

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Tom Grunshaw

A chemist by day, Tom takes an analytical approach to the emerging game, with a focus on events in Europe.

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