London: Former champions India will face hosts England at Derby, while New Zealand meets qualifier Sri Lanka in Bristol on the opening day of the ICC Women’s World Cup which gets underway on June 24, ICC said on Wednesday.
India will feature in four games in Derby, including the much-anticipated clash with its arch rival Pakistan on July 2.
India will also take on the West Indies in Taunton, Australia in Bristol and South Africa in Leicester.
Reigning champion Australia will begin its title defence against West Indies at Taunton on June 26, said the International Cricket Council (ICC) said in a release.
The tournament will see 28 matches being held over 21 days. A round-robin between the world’s eight best teams will conclude with the semi-finals at Bristol and Derby before the final at Lord’s on July 23.
England will take on the six-time and reigning champion Australia in Bristol on July 9 and the highly-fancied New Zealand in Derby on July 12.
The big-hitting West Indies team, runner-up in the 2013 edition, will play three matches in Taunton including the repeat of the Mumbai final against Australia in the opening match at the County Ground on June 26.
Leicester will be the home venue for Pakistan with five of its seven matches being staged at Grace Road including matches against England on June 27 and Australia on July 5.
The two semi-finals will be in Derby and Bristol on July 18 and July 20, culminating with a Lord’s final on 23 July, for which tickets are already selling quickly.
David Richardson, the ICC Chief Executive, said: “I can’t think of a better moment than International Women’s Day to unveil the schedule of one of the leading global events in women’s sport.
“We are anticipating an exciting tournament and I know the players are looking forward to competing here in front of unprecedented levels of support.
“We’ve already sold 9000 tickets for the final at Lord’s which bodes well for the rest of the event going on sale today. I know we can always count on the British sport loving public to support big events.
“After the extremely successful qualifying tournament in Sri Lanka last month, we can already see that there will be some fiercely contested fixtures as the standard and competitiveness of women’s cricket continues to rise,” he said.
Steve Elworthy, the Managing Director of the ICC Women’s World Cup, said: “We are extremely excited about the ICC Women’s World Cup being staged at four outstanding county grounds which I am sure will provide the best possible showcase for the top players in the women’s game.
“Today, the tickets for all the matches will go on sale and I am sure they will be in high demand as each of the competing countries have large support in England and Wales.
This promises to be the best ICC Women’s World Cup tournament and I am sure everyone will want to be a part of the event.