Donning the nation's colors at the grandest carnival in world cricket - the World Cup - is the dream of every cricketer. After the end of the 2019 edition, which saw England better New Zealand in a breathtaking final to win their maiden World Cup title, a number of teams have already begun preparing for the quadrennial event that is scheduled to take place in 2023.
The 2023 World Cup will be hosted by India, and there are bound to be many fresh faces participating in that event.
Age is one of the many important factors that can put the brakes on any athlete's career, irrespective of how talented they are. And there are several accomplished cricketers who will likely not feature in the 2023 World Cup due to that factor. While some of them have already pulled the plug on their ODI career, others are on the verge of doing so.
On that note, let's take a look at the greatest XI of players that are unlikely to play in World Cup 2023.
#1 Hashim Amla
Hashim Amla's inability to rise to the occasion in World Cup 2019 was one of the many reasons behind South Africa's early exit. The veteran was able to amass just 203 runs in 7 innings at an average of 40.6, with a sub-standard strike rate to boot.
Many had predicted that the recently-concluded World Cup would be Amla's last international assignment, but it looks like he is not ready to call it a day. After their 9-wicket win against Sri Lanka in the World Cup, South Africa's skipper Faf du Plessis stated:
“He (Amla) said he wants to keep going, so I think, you leave it to a great player to make that decision himself.”
Amla is currently 36 years old; by the time the next World Cup starts, he would be entering his 40s. It is highly unlikely that he will be able to continue till then.
#2 Chris Gayle
Chris Gayle had already announced back in March that he planned to retire following the Cricket World Cup. However, he back-pedaled on that decision a couple of days ago.
The West Indies selectors gave Gayle a place in the one-day squad to face India in a three-match series on Friday. But Gayle is 39 years old as of now, and it would be a stretch for him to play in the 2023 considering he would be 43 then.
#3 Faf du Plessis
Faf du Plessis intimated his retirement plans when Australia toured South Africa in November 2018, stating that the upcoming T20 World Cup could be the last international assignment for him.
"The T20 World Cup in 2020 is something I’m really looking forward to. I think right now that will probably be the last tournament for me," he said.
Even if the South African skipper prolongs his career following the tournament in Australia, he is unlikely to have enough gas to last until 2023.