The 2013 edition of the ICC Champions Trophy will be played in England and Whales. South Africa versus India will kick off the tournament at Sophia Gardens in Cardiff on June 6th. The 8 teams taking part will be split into two groups of four, and after the 12 pool matches, the top two teams from each group will face each other in a semifinal, followed by the final which will be played at Edgbaston on June 23rd.
|30 May 2013||12:00 GMT||Pakistan vs Sri Lanka (Warm Up)||Birmingham|
|01 June 2013||09:30 GMT||India vs Sri Lanka (Warm Up)||Birmingham|
|01 June 2013||12:00 GMT||Australia vs West Indies (Warm Up)||Cardiff|
|03 June 2013||09:30 GMT||Pakistan vs South Africa (Warm Up)||The Oval|
|04 June 2013||09:30 GMT||Australia vs India (Warm Up)||Cardiff|
|04 June 2013||09:30 GMT||Sri Lanka vs West Indies (Warm Up)||Birmingham|
|06 June 2013||09:30 GMT||1st Match, Group B - India vs South Africa||Cardiff|
|07 June 2013||09:30 GMT||2nd Match, Group B - Pakistan vs West Indies||London|
|08 June 2013||09:30 GMT||3rd Match, Group A - England vs Australia||Birmingham|
|09 June 2013||09:30 GMT||4th Match, Group A - New Zealand vs Sri Lanka||Mohali|
|10 June 2013||12:00 GMT||5th Match, Group B - Pakistan vs South Africa||Birmingham|
|11 June 2013||09:30 GMT||6th Match, Group B - India vs West Indies||London|
|12 June 2013||09:30 GMT||7th Match, Group A - Australia vs New Zealand||Birmingham|
|13 June 2013||13:00 GMT||8th Match, Group A - England vs Sri Lanka||London|
|14 June 2013||09:30 GMT||9th Match, Group B - South Africa vs West Indies||Cardiff|
|15 June 2013||09:30 GMT||10th Match, Group B - India vs Pakistan||Birmingham|
|16 June 2013||09:30 GMT||11th Match, Group A - England vs New Zealand||Cardiff|
|17 June 2013||13:00 GMT||12th Match, Group A - Australia vs Sri Lanka||London|
|19 June 2013||09:30 GMT||1st Semi-Final - A1 vs B2||London|
|20 June 2013||09:30 GMT||2nd Semi-Final - A2 vs B1||Cardiff|
|23 June 2013||09:30 GMT||Final - TBC vs TBC||Birmingham|
The eight teams taking part this year are:
Captained by Michael Clarke, Australia are the current title holders, winning the last two installments of the tournament played in India and South Africa. The team has gone through many of changes of late, with lots of young blood brought into the squad. Players like Faulkner and Johnson have made a good name for themselves in the IPL, and will be looking to carry that form into the tournament. With the bat they will be looking to Captain Michael Clarke, and the pocket rocket David Warner to do the bulk of the run scoring.
The hosts will be looking to take advantage of the home conditions, in particular the likes of James Anderson, who will be their biggest weapon in the tournament. The innovative middle order pairing of Eoin Morgan and Joe Root will be vital for England. They’ve also included the experience of Ravi Bopara in the squad, adding value with both bat and ball.
A team loaded with stars, captained by the biggest of the lot, MS Dhoni. The likes of Gambhir and Yuvraj Singh were both left out of the squad, making place for some new blood in the form of Dinesh Karthik and Shakhar Dhawan. Amit Mishra gets a well-deserved call up after an excellent IPL. India have match winners in all departments, and stand a very good chance to add the ICC Champions Trophy to their cabinet after winning the world cup.
The Black Caps last won the trophy way back in 2000/1 when the tournament was played in Kenya. Captain Brendon McCullum will be looking to lead from the front, and will be looking towards the experienced Daniel Vettori for assistance. The side has a nice mix of experience and youth, with their fighting spirit, they are a side to never write off. Australian born wicket keeper Luke Ronchi has also been included in the squad, and should make his debut for New Zealand.
A Pakistan side without the names Shaid Afridi and Younis Khan is almost unthinkable, but has not become reality as they look towards the future. Misbah-ul-Haq will continue on as captain, despite being close to 39 years of age. Mohammad Hafeez will be the key batsman at the top of the order, needing to lead the way for the youngsters down the order. Mohammad Irfan and the spin of Ajmal and Hafeez will be Pakistans biggest weapon in this tournament.
As with many other sides, South Africa enter a new era, looking to win the trophy they last won back in 1998/9 in Bangladesh, without the likes of Graeme Smith and Jacques Kallis. The return of Jean-Paul Duminy will be a great boost to the side. The experience of Hashim Amla and AB de Villiers will have to do the bulk of the run scoring, leaving the finishing to David Miller, who has shown during the IPL what he is capable of. Dale Steyn has been in tremendous form with the ball, he will be hoping that his partner in crime Morne Morkel will return to his best.
A start studded side, capable of anything on the day. They will rely heavily on Sangakkara and Jayawardene, who both disappointed in the IPL, in fact the duo, along with Angelo Matthews and Dilshan were all dropped from their respective IPL sides due to poor form. This will be a concern for the team supporters. The likes of Malinga has also not been on song of late. If they are all able to put the past behind them, they will be a formidable side and stand every chance of winning the tournament.
The West Indies will be looking to repeat the feat of 2004, when they won the tournament which was also played in England. They are a inconsistent side, loaded with match winner in all departments, question is, can they click as a team? They rely heavily on Chris Gayle at the top of the order, and have shown in the past if he fails, the team follows. It will therefore be incredibly important that the likes od Samuels and Sarwan can anchor the innings if they are to have any chance in the tournament.
England are the current favorites to win the tournament, supporters hoping they can make the most of the local conditions. They are followed by Australia and South Africa, the latter will be looking to shake of their chokers tag, and hoping to give their coach Gary Kirsten a decent send off, with his last tournament in charge of the national team.