Hosts New Zealand will kick off the 2022 Women's ODI World Cup on March 4 against one of the qualifying sides in Tauranga, as eight of the best teams in women's cricket will battle over 31 matches in 31 days across six cities.
Defending champions England will start their campaign with a high-profile meeting against Australia on March 5 in Hamilton. And 2017 runners-up India will hope to go one better as they, too, start off by facing the qualifying side on March 6.
While New Zealand, Australia, England, South Africa and India have qualified, three qualifying sides will come from a tournament to take place in Sri Lanka between June 26 and July 10, 2021. As to the format of the World Cup itself, all eight teams will play against each other once and the top four will go through to the semi-finals.
Wellington will host the first semi-final on March 30 and Christchurch will host the second semi-final and the final on March 31 and April 3. All three games will have a reserve day. Auckland and Dunedin are the remaining two of the six venues which were retained from the original schedule of 2021.
Auckland will also host the massive double-header weekend with India taking on Australia on March 19, and New Zealand facing England the following day. An ICC release confirmed all matches will be broadcast live to a "huge global audience".
The Hagley Oval has only recently been upgraded with floodlights and New Zealand veteran Amy Satterthwaite is eager to see how her home ground will look come game time.
"To play in a World Cup at our own stomping ground here in Christchurch, under lights, would be a real career highlight," she said. "It was hard to watch the T20 Women's Cricket World Cup from the sidelines back in March (after giving birth in January) so seeing the match schedule all locked in for the ODI World Cup here in 2022 gives both myself and the rest of the team a target to strive for as we prepare over the next 16 months."
In addition to being called champions, the team that wins it all will walk away with a prize money of NZD 5.5 million (US $3.9 million approx.). India have come close to clinching those honours and Mithali Raj is keen to go again.
"India has been doing very well at ICC tournaments in the past three or four years, whether you talk about the (ODI) World Cup or the recently concluded T20 World Cup," she said. "And if we manage to win the tournament in 2022, it will be a massive inspiration for the next generation of girls, as the 50-over format, is considered the pinnacle for any cricketer."
The World Cup had to be postponed from its original date in 2021 due to the Covid-19 pandemic and will be one of two bumper women's cricket events in 2022 alongside the Commonwealth Games in England.
2022 Women's ODI World Cup schedule
New Zealand vs Qualifier, March 4, Tauranga
Australia vs England, March 5, Hamilton
Qualifier vs South Africa, March 5, Dunedin
Qualifier vs India, March 6, Tauranga
New Zealand vs Qualifier, March 7, Dunedin
Australia vs Qualifier, March 8, Tauranga
Qualifier vs England, March 9. Dunedin
New Zealand vs India, March 10, Hamilton
Qualifier vs South Africa, March 11, Tauranga
Qualifier vs India, March 12, Hamilton
New Zealand vs Australia, March 13, Wellington
South Africa vs England, March 14, Tauranga
Qualifier vs Qualifier, March 14, Hamilton
Australia vs Qualifier, March 15, Wellington
England vs India, March 16, Tauranga
New Zealand vs South Africa, March 17, Hamilton
Qualifier vs Qualifier, March 18, Tauranga
India vs Australia, March 19, Auckland
New Zealand vs England, March 20, Auckland
Qualifier vs Qualifier, March 21, Hamilton
India vs Qualifier, March 22, Hamilton
South Africa vs Australia, March 22, Wellington
South Africa vs Qualifier, March 24, Wellington
England vs Qualifier, March 24, Christchurch
Qualifier vs Australia, March 25, Wellington
New Zealand vs Qualifier, March 26, Christchurch
India vs South Africa, March 27, Christchurch
England vs Qualifier, March 27, Wellington
1st semi-final, March 30, Wellington
2nd semi-final, March 31, Christchurch
Final, April 3, Christchurch