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Champions Trophy 2025 qualification on the line during 2023 World Cup

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Qualifications for the next edition of the Champions Trophy in 2025, set to be played in Pakistan, is on the line for teams currently partaking in the ongoing men’s ODI World Cup 2023. Teams that finish top-seven in the league phase will feature in the eight-team event alongside the hosts – Pakistan – in the ICC event.

England captain Jos Buttler said during the post-match presentation after the defeat to India that he was aware of this rule but their head coach Matthew Mott later revealed during the press conference that they came to know of it only ‘an hour and a half ago’. The qualification process for the tournament previously was through ICC rankings for a period of time.

“Well, the ICC do change the rules quite a bit with qualification and to be honest I don’t think it would affect in any way the way we’ve played in this tournament so it’s not a big deal,” Mott said about this new rule, before admitting it gives the bruised holders a ‘lot of focus’.

“It gives us a lot of focus that we need to make sure we can’t just turn up. We’ve got to turn up and play and win those games. We’re obviously up against some good teams in those last few games as well. That’s the motivation for us to pick ourselves up off the canvas and keep throwing punches,” he added.

The rule first came to light in the press conference after Bangladesh’s defeat to Netherlands on Saturday evening. Bangladesh captain Shakib Al Hasan spoke about ‘keeping it in mind’ ahead of their last three games after suffering five successive defeats since their win over Afghanistan. This rule gives the likes of Bangladesh, Netherlands, Sri Lanka and perhaps even Afghanistan an added incentive to finish the tournament well, even if making it to the semis isn’t entirely in their hands anymore.

No disharmony in England dressing room

In the aftermath of fifth morale-crushing loss of the World Cup that keeps them pinged to the bottom spot in the points table, Mott has had to field questions about there being some kind of disharmony in the dressing room. Mott rubbished those claims, made by England’s 2019 World Cup-winning skipper Eoin Morgan.

“No, not really. I don’t think that at all. I think anyone that’s inside our tent at the moment would say that despite our results, we’re an incredibly tight-knit unit,” Mott said. “I said to the boys the other day, Dave Humphries, who’s a former rugby international, was flabbergasted just how tight the unit was when he came in for a week to observe us, given the results that we’ve had.”

“There’s every opportunity when you’re losing – to splinter and go separate ways. I can only say from my opinion the group’s been incredibly strong in that part. If you see our training sessions, they’re full of fun. People are putting their arms around each other, trying to help them. It’s easy to do that when you’re winning. It’s a lot harder when you’re losing. I’m proud that we keep trying to get up,” Mott added.

Mott also said that the team has a good relationship with Morgan, and that he would clear this out with him.

“Eoin’s entitled to his opinion. He’s obviously been away for a couple of weeks with the birth of his child. He hasn’t been in and around the rooms, but I’ll certainly take that up with him and have a chat with him. We’ve got a really good relationship with him. So, if he’s seeing something that I’m not, I’ll definitely have that conversation,” Mott said.

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