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Wasim Akram Image Credit: Gulf News archive

Dubai: A line-up of cricket legends will form the commentators’ team for the ICC Cricket World Cup 2019, officials have announced.

The International Cricket Council (ICC) has released the list of TV pundits that will bring the World Cup action from England and Wales to the fans around the world.

The star-studded panel includes greats and former captains such as Wasim Akram, Kumar Sangakkara, Sourav Ganguly, Brendon McCullum and Graeme Smith.

Also on board is Michael Clarke, the last man to lift the ICC Cricket World Cup as Australia’s captain.

Clarke will be making his ICC TV commentary debut.

He joins some of the most experienced and respected broadcasters like Nasser Hussain, Michael Atherton, Ian Bishop, Alison Mitchell and Melanie Jones.

Other big names who will commentate through the tournament are former South African skipper Shaun Pollock, Michael Slater, Mark Nicholas, Michael Holding, Isa Guha, Pommie Mbangwa, Sanjay Manjrekar, Harsha Bhogle, Simon Doull, Ian Smith, Rameez Raja, Athar Ali Khan and Ian Ward.

Akram, known as the Sultan of Swing and the hero of Pakistan’s World Cup triumph in 1992, said: “The upcoming Cricket World Cup has the same format as in 1992.

“It is the best format as teams get more chances and I reckon all teams will have an equal chance to qualify for the semi-finals.”

He said a World Cup comes once every four years, so players wait for it eagerly and do their best to give a memorable performance.

“I hope we are going to see some stiff competition with edge-of-the-seat thrillers, high skills and unmatched moments with the best players of the world on show.”

The articulate Sangakkara, who cracked four consecutive centuries in the last edition of the 2015 ICC Cricket World Cup in Australia, said: “This is going to be a very special summer of cricket in England and Wales and possibly the most competitive ICC Men’s Cricket World Cup of all time. Hosts England have a great team but there are several realistic contenders and we are sure to see some amazing cricket along the way.”