Rahul Dravid calls for change in current World Cup format
Former Indian captain Rahul Dravid has expressed his dissatisfaction with the format for the 2015 World Cup, which sees the 14 participating teams in 2 separate groups of 7 teams each. Pool A consists of England, Australia, Sri Lanka, Bangladesh, New Zealand, Afghanistan and Scotland, while Pool B consists of South Africa, India, West Indies, Pakistan, Zimbabwe, Ireland and United Arab Emirates (UAE). With the way the tournament has been designed, it is pretty certain that the top 8 Test playing nations, unless somebody has a shocker of a tournament, will all reach the quarter-final stage of the competition.
"It's almost easy barring the odd upset or someone really having a bad tournament; you can almost predict who the top eight will be sitting here in the studio today," Dravid said while speaking on ‘Contenders’, an ESPNcricinfo special looking ahead to the World Cup. "There comes a time in a tournament like this - and I sensed it a little bit during the last World Cup when I wasn't playing but just watching - that everyone starts to wait for the quarterfinals. Sure, in between you have some big games as well but you know eventually that these are going to be the best eight teams."
Every World Cup game should matter: Dravid
Citing the 1999 and 2003 editions of the World Cup to be the best format for the game’s marquee event, with teams having to be on their toes pretty much from the start of the tournament, the 42-year-old added: "You had to play well throughout the tournament. It gave you a bit of a chance to recover if you started off slowly as we did in 2003. When three teams qualified for the super six stage, every game mattered. Points got carried over as well, so you knew you couldn't relax in any of the games because if you lose a game, you don't get to carry over those points.
"They need to just tighten it up, ensure that it's a shorter tournament and have a format where it's just not easy to predict who the top eight teams are going to be. There should be some tension in the top eight sides that if they mess up they won't qualify for the super sixes.”