The final 2 spots in the World Cup Qualifiers was up for grabs when 6 teams meet in the ICC WCL Division 2 in Namibia in Feb 2018 and with it, the chance to retain/gain ODI status for the next 4 years until 2022.
ICC has announced that Netherlands (ICC World Cricket League Championship winners) and the three highest finishing Emerging Members in the World Cup Qualifiers will earn ODI status till 2022 upon the conclusion of the tournament. It means that bottom 2 Emerging nations will miss out on the chance. Many will term this as highly unfair as after the previous World Cup Qualifiers, 6 teams were awarded the ODI status including then Emerging nations, Ireland & Afghanistan.
How the next WCL Championship will pan out needs to be seen as Netherlands most likely won’t be a part of the WCL set-up and if ICC decides to continue WCL with 8 teams, then the 5 other Emerging teams in the World Cup Qualifiers will be joined by 3 more teams to form the routine 8-team tournament.
Gaining ODI status will mean improved funding from the ICC and failure to qualify for World Cup Qualifiers will mean no status for the countries and it will be very difficult for them to get regular matches or fixtures against others.
With UAE and Nepal now confirmed as the final two entrants in ICC World Cup Qualifiers, it’ll be a dual battle for the 6 countries (Netherlands, Scotland, Hong Kong, Papua New Guinea, UAE & Nepal) to compete for the two spots in ICC Cricket World Cup alongside the 4 Test members (West Indies, Afghanistan, Zimbabwe & Ireland) and the battle between 5 countries (All Emerging nations excluding Netherlands) for the 3 ODI status spots reserved for the top 3 finishing teams amongst them in the Qualifiers.