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The hosting rights were awarded in April 2006, after England and Wales withdrew from the bidding to host the 2015 ICC Cricket World Cup, which was held in Australia and New Zealand. The first match was played at The Oval while the final will be played at Lord’s. It is the fifth time that the Cricket World Cup is being held in England and Wales, following the 1975, 1979, 1983 and 1999 World Cups.
The format for the tournament is a single group of 10 teams, with each team playing the other nine once, and the top four at the end of the group phase progressing to the semi-finals. The 10-team tournament has gained criticism due to the lack of Associate teams in the tournament. Given the increase of the Test-playing nations from 10 to 12, with the admission of Ireland and Afghanistan in June 2017, it is the first World Cup to be contested without all of the Test playing nations being present, and after the elimination of all the Associate teams at the qualifying tournament, this is also the first World Cup to feature no Associate members.
Following the 2019 Pulwama attack, several former Indian players and the Board of Control for Cricket in India (BCCI) called for the boycott of the group match fixture between India and Pakistan, wanting to ban the Pakistan team from playing in the tournament. However, after conducting a press meet in Dubai, the International Cricket Council (ICC) rejected the BCCI’s statement regarding banning Pakistan from the World Cup and assured that the scheduled match will go ahead as planned despite the ongoing standoff between the two nations.