Coronavirus: Women's Cricket World Cup in NZ in danger of postponement

The COVID-19 crisis has already taken a big toll on international sport and it could have a domino effect on a major tournament scheduled for New Zealand next year.

The ICC Women's World Cup is timed to start in February, but Newshub understands discussions are already well underway to postpone the event, with a decision possibly later this week.

On Thursday, the ICC will host a chief executives committee meeting, focusing on the impact of the coronavirus crisis.

On the agenda is an "update on the continuing contingency planning for all ICC global events, including the ICC Men's T20 World Cup".

Scheduled for Australia in October, sources have told Newshub the event is almost certain to be postponed until February next year, which would mean a direct clash with the Women's World Cup in New Zealand.

And that idea doesn't sit well with NZ Sport Minister Grant Robertson.

"I think the tournament's really important for New Zealand," Robertson told Newshub. "This is an elite level ICC tournament.

"I definitely wouldn't want to see a cricket Women's World Cup overshadowed by any other event."

The clash is caused by a domino effect, stemming from the Indian Premier League, which was due to be played now. 

Sources say officials are now looking to play the lucrative tournament in October, forcing a shift for the Men's T20 World Cup to February.

If that scenario unfolds, it would likely prompt the postponement of the Women's World Cup.  

Tournament officials were blocked from speaking to Newshub, but the ICC confirmed contingency planning is underway, including "exploring all options available to us based on a range of scenarios connected to the pandemic".

"'I'm confident in the ICC that they'll make decisions that will allow for the tournaments to be hosted and have their own limelight throughout that period." Robertson adds.

That could mean postponement for one of the pinnacle events on the women's sporting calendar. 

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