London: The International Cricket Council (ICC) has defended its decision to not allocate reserve days for the league phase of the ICC World Cup 2019 in England and Wales.

After three games were washed out due to rain in the ongoing 10-team tournament, ICC chief executive David Richardson explained the move behind not having reserve days for the round robin clashes and only for semi-finals and final.

Also read: World Cup 2019 format, rain rules, Super Over and other playing conditions

Sri Lanka-Bangladesh game was washed out without a ball being bowled on Tuesday (June 11). Bangladesh coach Steve Rhodes had questioned ICC's decision of not having reserve days.

"Yeah, I would (be in favour of reserve days). I think when you look, if you know the English weather, sadly, we're going to get a lot of rain. We never know when the rain's going to come. People from all over the world keep asking me whether it's going to rain; I don't know," he said.

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"But at the moment, we're seeing some problems. And I know logistically, it would have been a big headache for the tournament organisers, and I know that it would have been difficult, but we have got quite a lot of time in between games, and if we have got to travel a day later, then so be it. We put men on the moon (laughing) so why can't we have a reserve day.

"I would say that it's disappointing for the crowd, as well. They have got tickets to see a game of cricket, and you know, it would be up to them if they can get there the day after," he added.

Bangladesh coach Steve Rhodes

Here is the full statement from Richardson

“Factoring in a reserve day for every match at the ICC World Cup 2019 would significantly increase the length of the tournament and practically would be extremely complex to deliver.

It would impact pitch preparation, team recovery and travel days, accommodation and venue availability, tournament staffing, volunteer and match officials availability, broadcast logistics and very importantly the spectators who in some instances have travelled hours to be at the game. There is also no guarantee that the reserve day would be free from rain either.

Up to 1200 people are on site to deliver a match and everything associated with it including getting it broadcast and a proportion of them are moving around the country so reserve days in the group stage would require a significant uplift in the number of staff. We have reserve days factored in for the knock-out stages, knowing that over the course of 45 group games we should play the large majority.

This is extremely unseasonable weather. In the last couple of days we have experienced more than twice the average monthly rainfall for June which is usually the third driest month in the UK. In 2018 there was just 2mm of rain in June but the last 24 hours alone has seen around 100mm fall in the south-east of England.  

When a match is affected by weather conditions, the venue team work closely with Match Officials and Ground Staff to ensure that we have the best possible opportunity to play cricket, even if it is a reduced overs game. We also work to keep fans in the stadium, or those travelling to the game, as up-to-date as possible with any information we have, either through public announcements or on our social media channels.”