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ICC Board Meeting: Big Three Proposal to get approve in Melbourne at the end of June

DUBAI: The two-day ICC board meeting in Dubai ended without any final decision over ‘Big Three Proposal’ as the proposal would be finalized in the next meeting scheduled to be held in Melbourne at the end of June, ARY News reported.

In other developments, the ICC board has agreed to retain the format of the World T20 for the next edition, to be held in India in 2016.

For the next tournament, the top eight Full Members on the ICC T20I rankings, as on April 30 2014, will automatically qualify for the second round, while the ninth and 10th ranked Full Members will get automatic places in the first (qualifying) round.

Six qualifiers will progress from the 14-team ICC World T20 Qualifier in 2015, which will be staged in Ireland and Scotland from July 9 to August 2 2015.

Furthermore, ICC agreed to provide associate teams an opportunity to play Test cricket, with the ICC Board approving an ICC Test Challenge, which will take place every four years between the lowest-ranked Test team and the winner of the ICC Intercontinental Cup.

The inaugural Test Challenge will take place in 2018, with the intention of giving a context to the Intercontinental Cup.

The Intercontinental Cup, spread out over two years, is a first-class tournament played among the Associate teams. According to the new proposal, the side ranked 10th in the ICC Test rankings on December 31, 2017, or at the conclusion of any series in progress at that time, will play two five-day Tests at home and two five-day Tests away against the winner of the upcoming Intercontinental Cup.

The next Intercontinental Cup will run from 2015 to 2017, and the next edition from 2019 to 2021. The second ICC Test Challenge is scheduled for 2022.

Since the Intercontinental Cup's inception in 2004, Ireland have won it four times, with Afghanistan and Scotland winning one each. The new proposal will give promising teams like Ireland a chance to take their international cricket to the next level.

According to ICC chief executive David Richardson, "The ICC Test Challenge now opens the door for Associate Members to play Test cricket and in doing so gives even greater context to the ICC Intercontinental Cup which will now be a pathway to Test cricket."

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