The Cricket World Tournament is among the most viewed sports events in the world. For instance, the finals are transmitted in over 200 countries, there are hundreds of thousands of live viewers, and the events generate hundreds of millions of dollars in revenue.
The World Cup is organised by the International Cricket Council ICC every four years. The first-ever tournament was held in England in 1975. The last tournament was played in 2019, and the next one will take place in 2023.
The current world champions of cricket are England, having won the 2019 title that is hosted in cooperation with Wales. The final match was played between England and New Zealand. Some other important participating countries are India, Pakistan, Sri Lanka, and Australia.
The tournament is open to all the ICC member countries, including full members, associate members, and affiliate members. All the teams must qualify separately for each edition of the World Cup. The current regulation for qualifying teams has been in force since 2015.
The highest-ranking teams of the previous tournament qualify automatically, and the rest of the teams must compete in preliminary matches to participate.
Throughout the history, the number of participating teams has varied. Originally there were eight teams divided into two groups. In 2011 and 2015, fourteen teams participated, whereas the number was brought down to ten for the 2019 tournament.
Also, the format of the game has evolved throughout the history of the World Cup. For a long time, the tournament was divided into groups that played only among themselves, and group winners played against each other.
Since 2019, a round-robin format was adopted, in which all the teams play against all the other teams. There is no longer a division into groups. Then the winning teams enter into two semifinals, and its winners compete in a final.