ICC unveils FTP involving Test Championship

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Justin Langer's men will also feature in away Test series against South Africa and Bangladesh during the qualification period for the 2021 final.

In total, India will play 18 Tests in WTC and 12 of them will be against Australia, South Africa and England.

All sides will play eight series over a two-year cycle on a home-and-away basis against agreed opponents.

David Richardson, the ICC Chief Executive, congratulated the members for their efforts in the preparation of the FTP, saying, "The agreement of this FTP means we have clarity, certainty and most importantly context around bilateral cricket over the next five years".

As part of the programme, Ireland's mens team will play 13 Test matches, 62 one-day internationals and 65 T20 Internationals, between 2018 and 2023. The FTP confirmed several dates for all the bilateral worldwide matches. In the year preceding the 50-over World Cup, the ODI league will be suspended during which teams can play more than three matches in a series, e.g the ongoing five-match ODI series between England and Australia, as a bilateral series.

Pakistan begins the World Test Championship in familiar style in October 2019: with a two-Test series at home against Sri Lanka.

Nine top-ranked sides will participate in the inaugural edition of the World Test Championship, which will run from July 15, 2019 to April 30, 2020.

New Zealand have only played three Tests at the MCG, losing by an innings in 1973-74 in a match that started on December 29, and drawing the 1980 Boxing Day Test.

Their other series against Australia is at home in February 2021 and they will be in England for three Tests in July 2022.

The ODI league will act as a qualification pathway for the ICC Cricket World Cup.

"It's exciting for fans and players to see the new context which is being given to ODI and test cricket", Williamson said in a statement. Along with 12 Test playing nations, Netherlands, the victor of the last edition of ICC World Cricket League, will participate in this league, in which all the sides will play eight series over a two-year cycle on a home and away basis against mutually agreed opponents. Hosts India along with the seven highest-ranked sides in the ODI league at the end of March 2022 will directly qualify, while the bottom five sides will get a second chance to enter through qualifiers.

The structure of men's FTP includes the ICC Cricket World Cups (2019, 2023), ICC World T20s (2020, 2021), World Test Championship cycle 1 (2019-2021 with final), cycle 2 (2021-2023 with final) and all bilateral Tests, ODIs and T20Is.

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