ISLAMABAD, Dec 15 (APP): Sri Lanka’s Mahela Jayawardene and Pakistan’s Shahid Afridi are in line to become the most experienced players in ICC Cricket World Cup history, after they were named in provisional squads for the tournament that starts on February 14.
The two players made their World Cup debuts at the ICC Cricket World Cup 1999, and have appeared in every event since then.
While Jayawardene featured in the final of the ICC Cricket World Cup 2007 and 2011, as well as the semi-final of the ICC Cricket World Cup 2003, Shahid Afridi was a member of the Pakistan side that played the final at Lord’s in 1999. He captained Pakistan at the ICC Cricket World Cup 2011 where Pakistan reached the semi-final.
If the two players are named in the final line-ups, likely to be announced around January 8 2015, then they will join the exclusive company of Wasim Akram, Shivnarine Chanderpaul, Aravinda de Silva, Inzamam-ul-Haq, Sanath Jayasuriya, Jacques Kallis, Imran Khan, Brian Lara, Muttiah Muralidaran, Thomas Odoyo, Ricky Ponting, Arjuna Ranatunga and Steve Tikolo, who have each played in five ICC Cricket World Cups to date.
Pakistan’s Javed Miandad and India’s Sachin Tendulkar, with six ICC Cricket World Cups each, share the record for the most appearances at ICC’s pinnacle event.
Interestingly, this will be the first ICC Cricket World Cup which will be held without either Javed Miandad or Sachin Tendulkar. Javed Miandad played from 1975 to 1996, while Tendulkar represented his country from 1992-2011.
Miandad featured in semi-finals in 1979, 1983 and 1987, final in 1992 and quarter-final in 1996, while Tendulkar appeared in the 1996 quarter-final, and 2003 and 2011 finals.
Besides Jayawardene and Shahid Afridi, seven other players are in line to appear in their fourth World Cup: James Anderson, Chris Gayle, Brendon McCullum, Younis Khan, Robin Peterson, Kumar Sangakkara and Daniel Vettori.
The United Arab Emirates (UAE), which is returning the ICC Cricket World Cup for the first time since 1996, has named the oldest and youngest players of the tournament in its 30-player provisional squad. Khurram Khan at 43 is the oldest players (born 21 June 1971) while Yodhin Punja, who turned 15 on 24 April 2014, is the youngest player.