February 4, 2023

Filipino Guardian

Sentinels of Filipino Free Press

Five big events to watch

(FILES) England’s Ben Stokes plays during the ICC Men’s Twenty20 World Cup 2022 Cricket Final match between England and Pakistan at Melbourne Cricket Ground (MCG) on November 13, 2022 in Melbourne. (Photo by Martin KEEP / AFP) / — RESTRICTED IMAGE TO EDITORIAL USE – NO COMMERCIAL USE ONLY —

AFP Sport looks at the flagship events:

CRICKET WORLD CUP

Where: India

When: October-November (dates to be determined)

— At the 13th edition of the global Over-50s showpiece, England will defend the title they won in exciting fashion on home soil in 2019. Although the event spans seven weeks and includes 48 games, only 10 teams are taking part. The top seven countries in the Super League plus hosts India make it, as do two teams from a qualifying tournament to be held in Zimbabwe in June/July. However, there is already controversy that former Pakistan Cricket Board boss Ramiz Raja has hinted his country could boycott the World Cup if India refuses to play the Asian Cup, which is also scheduled for Pakistan in 2023 .

RUGBY UNION WORLD CUP

Where: France

When: September 8th – October 28th

— All eyes will be on Antoine Dupont as he leads strong favorites France to a home World Cup featuring 20 nations across nine venues. France meets New Zealand in the opening match, promising an exciting start. Reigning champions South Africa are drawn into the same pool as Ireland, while Wales are in a pool alongside Australia, Georgia and Fiji, the top two of whom lost in the Autumn Nations Series. England enter the tournament in a state of flux after axing manager Eddie Jones in favor of Steve Borthwick.

ATHLETICS WORLD CHAMPIONSHIPS

Where: Budapest

When: 19-27 August

— World Athlete of the Year Armand Duplantis and Sydney McLaughlin-Levrone will battle to repeat their world record victories in the Hungarian capital. A year after the Covid-delayed World Championships in Eugene, Oregon, the biannual event will host a number of rising track and field stars. All eyes will be on Jamaica’s five-time 100m champion Shelly-Ann Fraser-Pryce in the women’s sprint aged 36. The US team will be looking at the likes of Fred Kerley, Noah Lyles, Michael Norman and Erriyon Knighton on the men’s short track, while Norway’s Jakob Ingebrigtsen and Karsten Warholm will look to build on their winning form.

WORLD SWIMMING CHAMPIONSHIPS

Where: Fukuoka, Japan

When: July 14-30

– As swimming tries to catch up from the pandemic, Fukuoka is hosting the second of three world championships in 19 months. The meeting was originally scheduled for 2021 but was pushed aside when the Tokyo Olympics were postponed. Fukuoka says it has a “concept,” “Water Meets the Future,” which “expresses the hope that all participants will meet the future.” But as established stars skipped major events with a view to the 2024 Olympics, swimming met its future in 2022. Romania’s David Popovici, Australia’s Mollie O’Callaghan, Canada’s Summer McIntosh, Italy’s Benadetta Pilato and America’s Torri Huske may all arrive in Japan to defend world titles won as teenagers last June.

WOMEN’S SOCCER WORLD CUP

Where: Australia and New Zealand

When: July 20 – August 20

— The all-conquering United States women’s national team faces stiff competition from a number of up-and-coming European World Cup contenders. The Americans have won four of the tournament’s eight previous editions, including the last two, but have been beaten by Germany, England and Spain this year. England are looking to confirm their victory on home soil at Euro 2022, while co-hosts Australia hope Chelsea star Sam Kerr can take the Matildas past the quarter-finals for the first time. Ten venues across nine host cities in Australia and New Zealand will host the first-ever 32-team Women’s World Cup, which is set to break records for attendance and attendance, another indication of the sport’s growing popularity.