- ICC Cricket World Cup 2015
England start World Cup against Australia
England have been drawn in the same group as co-hosts Australia and New Zealand for the 2015 Cricket World Cup. Sri Lanka, Bangladesh and two other Associates from qualifying tournaments will join them in Pool A of the 14-team tournament. India, South Africa, Pakistan, West Indies, Zimbabwe, Ireland and a qualifier will compete in Pool B.
World Cup draw
- Pool A: England, Australia, Sri Lanka, Bangladesh, New Zealand, Qualifier 2 and Qualifier 3
Pool B: South Africa, India, Pakistan, West Indies Zimbabwe, Ireland and Qualifier 4
Venue cities: Adelaide, Auckland, Brisbane, Canberra, Christchurch, Dunedin, Napier, Nelson, Hamilton, Hobart, Melbourne, Perth, Sydney, Wellington
The final will be staged at the Melbourne Cricket Club, the venue for the 1992 final in which England lost to Pakistan. The ground will also host the opening match between England and Australia on February 14, 2015.
Several tournament venues have undergone major redevelopments with 2015 in mind, not least the SCG with a projected capacity of 48,000, and Adelaide Oval's expansion to accommodate 50,000. Eden Park has also undergone a considerable facelift to also be capable of hosting 50,000 spectators.
The tournament will feature 49 matches across 44 days in 14 cities throughout February and March of 2015. Australia's 2014-15 Test summer has been shortened to a mere four matches against India in order to leave room for the cup's lengthy schedule.
A 14-team format has the competitors pitted in two groups of seven, each to play six pool matches before the top four in each group advance to the quarter-finals, semis and final.
A wide range of alternative options for the major matches of a tournament co-hosted by Australia and New Zealand had been discussed in the lead-up to the formal announcement of the official fixtures in Melbourne on Tuesday, including the prospect of a semi or final at Sydney's Olympic Stadium and even Adelaide Oval.
But the organisers ultimately retained the same formula as 1992, handing matches to the SCG and Eden Park before the event's show-piece takes place on March 29 at the MCG.