Shadab khan said Leg Spin crucial to CWC success

In the modern age of uber-talented batsmen relentlessly unfurling scoops, sweeps and slogs to pepper boundaries, there is one rare art that still proves a bowling attack’s great equalizer in one-day international cricket. In previous eras, wrist-spin was the scarcest of skills, that mysterious knack bestowed upon only the gifted few. Come this summer, however, it will be showcased like never before, with 12 operating at the Cricket World Cup and only two teams – Bangladesh and West Indies not unleashing a frontline option. Cricket followers are waiting for thrilling acts of their favorite players in this year’s contest. You can book Cricket World Cup Final tickets Online.

A quality leg-spinner is, and always will be, worth their weight in gold, the craftsman who can bamboozle and stem the tide that increasingly dictates the flow of an international limited-overs encounter. Their ability to operate at multiple stages of an innings, easing the burden on seamers tasked with facing ever-more-skilled batsmen armed only with two new balls that don’t often reach the point of reverse swing, is as critical as it is desperately sought

Shadab khan said Leg Spin crucial to CWC success
Shadab khan said Leg Spin crucial to CWC success

Of those, one of the most exciting is Pakistan’s 20-year-old Shadab Khan, a bundle of tricks and treats who boasts 47 wickets across 34 games at a tick over 29. But just why are he and contemporaries such as England’s Adil Rashid – who has taken more wickets than any bowler since the previous World Cup – so difficult to face?

“Because wrist-spinners spin every way,” Shadab tells the ICC. “If there is spin there it’s very difficult to play if you bowl in good areas, and it’s very difficult to play on any surface. That’s why it’s important. With a leg-spinner, yes you may score runs, but he is a wicket-taker. You’re always looking for wickets so that’s why we’re always in the game.”

With run rates above six an over now almost a formality in most encounters, the task of bowling groups have evolved, from control to conquer. The weight of runs may be impossible to stop, but chipping in with wickets can at least manage the damage.

“It’s a very important role,” says Shadab. “With batting [friendly] tracks the par score will be 300 so, if you take wickets in the middle overs, you have a good chance to win games. On these batting surfaces, we have to take wickets, otherwise, they’ll score 350-plus, so if you take the wickets you can contain them under 300. To contain them under 300 is very good.”

Such is the depth of tweakers in the tournament that there could even be some internal competition among the likes of Shadab and Rashid. For Pakistan’s star, however, merely being on the field is a relief, having missed the five-match one-day international series against England through illness. After coming through 10 overs in the warm-up game versus Afghanistan, he feels fresh and ready to fire.

“I feel better,” he says. “I’m in a very good rhythm. I practiced one or two days and bowled very well yesterday so I’m good.”

His return is a welcome one for Pakistan, who followed up a 4-0 loss to England with a warm-up defeat against Afghanistan. Their final pre-World Cup practice, against Bangladesh, was abandoned due to rain. But Shadab has no doubts a team renowned for being able to deliver on the big stage – as evidenced by their Champions Trophy victory on these shores two years ago – will be ready when the showpiece commences.

“In the England series,” he adds, “every game we were close. In the crunch situation, we didn’t win but we played very good cricket, competitive cricket. Our batting is in good form, our bowling hasn’t performed so far but, if you take one or two wickets, then they can slip up.”

Tasked with delivering those scalps will be their young twirler, the leg-spinning X-factor capable of altering the course of bat-dominated occasions.

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Skippers guess most closely fought CWC ever

The ICC Cricket World Cup 2019 is officially up and running and all ten captains are anticipating ‘the best tournament in history’. Cricket followers are waiting for thrilling performances of their favorite players in this year’s tournament. You can book Cricket World Cup Final tickets Online.

Captains meet the press one week before the tournament starts with England against South Africa. World number one hosts are the team to watch, according to visiting skippers

The Film Shed in London’s trendy east end played host to the official captain’s media launch of the 2019 tournament on Thursday afternoon.

And with hosts England kicking off the tournament in exactly a week’s time at the Oval against South Africa, the time for talking is almost over.

All ten teams will play each other in a new-look round-robin stage, with the top four qualifying for the semi-finals – a change in format that makes this year’s edition more competitive than ever.

Skippers guess most closely fought CWC19 ever
Skippers guess most closely fought CWC19 ever

And Eoin Morgan, Virat Kohli, and the ten tournament skippers can’t wait to get started, with a series of warm-up matches scheduled around the country in the next week.

England skipper Morgan said: “I don’t think anyone is head and shoulders above anyone else.

“These are the ten best teams in the world, it will be extraordinarily competitive and some quality cricket will be played so we are really looking forward to it. Every captain sitting here would lose their left leg to play in a World Cup final at the home of cricket.”

It’s something every one of us would have dreamed of as a kid.

“We are as best prepared as we can be. We just want to play that first game now.”

India skipper Virat Kohli added: “England in their conditions is the most strong side in this tournament.

“But all the teams so strong and well balanced and the fact we have to play everyone once, I think this will be the most competitive World Cup that anyone will have seen.”

Skippers guess most closely fought CWC19 ever
Skippers guess most closely fought CWC19 ever

Once it gets underway particularly against England and further on for the Ashes. The crowd will play a part but that is expected everywhere in the world.

“We have plans in place for that, and their squad input and output in terms of the runs they have been making has been fantastic.”

South Africa skipper Faf du Plessis is hoping to become the first man to lead the Proteas to a World Cup crown, after four semi-final appearances.

“We are all really excited to try out this new tournament, to play every once I think is great,” he said.

Skippers guess most closely fought CWC19 ever
Skippers guess most closely fought CWC19 ever

The way we use our resources will be vital, but every team has X-factor bowlers that will have a big say in the successes of the side.

“I think the bowlers will win it, the teams still in it towards the end of the tournament will be the teams that have done really well with the ball.”

Pakistan skipper Sarfaraz Ahmed – who led Pakistan when they won the ICC Champions Trophy in England in 2017 – is feeling confident.

“All the teams are really balanced. I think people are going to watch some great cricket,” he said.

Since winning the World Cup in 1992, making the final in 1999 here in England and the Champions Trophy in 2017, we go well in England so we are confident we will do well and challenge.

Skippers guess most closely fought CWC19 ever
Skippers guess most closely fought CWC19 ever

New Zealand was runners up four years ago and skipper Kane Williamson hopes his Black Caps side can go one better.

He said: “There are a few guys in the squad from the last World Cup which is great.”

But four years in between means there are a lot of new players.

“There has been of talk about rankings, favorites, underdogs but what stands out is how balanced it is. Which means anything can happen on the day which is so exciting.”

West Indies skipper Jason Holder added: It’s a very exciting format. In the past, you could play five or six games, and that could be it.

To play every side is great for us. We worked hard with the qualifiers to get here, which means it is the top ten in the world, we want to play them all and give ourselves a shot.

“The team that wins will definitely deserve it.”

Sri Lanka’s new captain Dimuth Karunaratne said: We have great experience in England, we came here early to get used to the conditions and we are in good shape, hoping to do our best.

“It is not going to be easy though. We are confident and taking it each game one by one.”

Skippers guess most closely fought CWC19 ever
Skippers guess most closely fought CWC19 ever

Afghanistan skipper Gulbadin Naib added: “We are excited to be here, in front of the cricket world and to play the best teams.

To present Afghanistan to the world is great and we are looking forward to it.

“There will be a huge audience at home in all the different provinces. Cricket is not just a sport now, in Afghanistan it has become something else.”

And finally Bangladesh captain Mashrafe Mortaza is confident his side can spring a surprise.

We have got a great bunch of boys, a good mix of seniors and juniors coming on.

Cricket is a game that anyone on their day can beat anybody. If we start well we can hang in there.

“We are confident that we can go well, but a lot depends on the start.”

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CWC19 announces most advanced CWC Coverage to date

ICC (The International Cricket Council) today announced a stellar line up of commentators for the ICC Cricket CWC along with complete broadcast plans that will bring more than a billion followers closer to the exploit and players than ever before. Cricket followers are waiting for thrilling performances of their favorite players in this year’s tournament. Currently, you can book Cricket World Cup Final tickets Online.

CWC19 announces most advanced CWC Coverage to date
CWC19 announces most advanced CWC Coverage to date

The last man to boost the ICC CWC, Clarke, will be creation his ICC TV commentary entrance along with some of the match’s most respected broadcasters counting Wasim Akram, Alison Mitchell, Nasser Hussain, Ian Bishop, Sourav Ganguly, Kumar Sangakkara, Michael Atherton, Melanie Jones, Brendon McCullum, and Graeme Smith.

Additional big names who will commentate through the CWC contain Michael Slater, Ian Ward, Shaun Pollock, Isa Guha, Pommie Mbangwa, Mark Nicholas, Michael Holding Sanjay Manjrekar, Harsha Bhogle, Simon Doull, Ramiz Raja, Athar Ali Khan, and Ian Smith.

CWC19 announces most advanced CWC Coverage to date
CWC19 announces most advanced CWC Coverage to date

Brendon McCullum: Still the marquee occasion in our sport, I have got so many pleasant memories of CWC. 2015 was the climax after a lot of hard work and I am excited to be complicated in a different volume this time around – confidently we’ll have plenty of drama.

Nasser Hussain: “The entire of ENG and Wales is energetic with enthusiasm in hope of the massive summer of cricket ahead. This edition of the CWC abilities to be the most amusing one yet and I cannot wait to be part of this event program and witness history in the making, first hand.”

Kumar Sangakkara: This is going to be a very superior summer of cricket in England and perhaps the most modest CWC of all time. Hosts England have a great side but there are several truthful candidates and we are sure to see some remarkable cricket along the way.

Melanie Jones: “There is a strong sense of expectation for this year’s CWC between players and followers alike. The round-robin format pitting each nation against each other added with the strength of all ten sides, will no doubt result in the most inexpensive and closely fought CWC to date. Add to that the chance of first time CWC winner and it’s as thrilling as the option of numerous upsets throughout.”

Wasim Akram: The upcoming CWC has the same setup as in 1992. It is the best format as sides get more probabilities and I calculate all sides will have an equal chance to succeed for the semi-finals. A CWC comes every four years so players wait for it and do their best to give a notable performance. I hope we are going to see some stiff rivalry with the edge of the seat thrillers, high skills and supreme moments with the best players of the world on show.

Ian Bishop: “I look forward to the next few weeks with great anticipation and expectation. It’s an honor to be part of the broadcast commentary team that will bring the stories, updates, and analysis of the CWC to you wherever you are. This edition promises to be even more exciting and innovative than ever and it is a great privilege to be a part of the team that brings it to you.”

ICC TV will produce live coverage of all 48 games being played over 46 days, as well as full live coverage of all ten warm-up games for the first time.

Audiences will be preserved to state-of-the-art coverage which will comprise a minimum of 32 cameras at every match, counting eight ultra-motion Hawk-Eye cameras, front and reverse view stump cameras and Spidercam.

The first time at a CWC, the broadcast will produce 360° replays, providing by Piero which permits multiple cameras feeds to be sewed together to create a spectacular video that helps provide an in-depth study of big moments in the match.

The coverage will also be completed with a diversity of logical and visual improvements including the use of Player Following. Broadcast tools such as Hawk-Eye will be added by an in-depth cricket data analytics system to be provided by analytics app CricViz.

The drone camera providing by Batcam will also provide spectacular visuals of all venues across England and Wales. There will be a roaming Buggy Cam as well, for a ground-level view of minutes.

ICC TV is maintained by production services partner Sunset+Vine and tackle services partner NEP Broadcast Solutions. Whilst sports graphics specialists Alston Elliott have developed a contemporary styled graphics package to visualize the ever-crucial scores and statistics throughout the coverage.

Aarti Dabas, Head of Media Rights, Broadcast and Digital said: “I am excited to welcome such a brilliant team of broadcasters to ICC TV; they will bring to life the CWC for more than a billion followers around the world.

“Our focus for this event has been on carrying fans closer to cricket than ever before and our complete host broadcast plan brings this. Followers can enjoy unique visions from our commentators added by extraordinary analytics focus making this the most attractive CWC broadcast production to date.”

ICC TV has also made preparations to produce a host of extra content off the field of play, to be dispersed to its broadcast partners and other media rights partners via the ICC TV Content Delivery Service. This content will include daily player profiles, team features, match previews, venue features and other behind the scenes content, getting followers up close and personal with all the action around the CWC19.

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Ashley Nurse said I have been doing my role in the team for CWC19

The West Indies spinner, Ashley Nurse is assured that he is satisfying the role the squad expects from him but would like to be even more reliable in the lead up to the ICC Cricket World Cup 2019. Cricket fans are waiting for thrilling performances of their favorite players in this year’s tournament. Now you can book Cricket World Cup Final tickets Online.

 Ashley Nurse said I have been doing my role in the team for CWC19
Ashley Nurse said I have been doing my role in the team for CWC19

Nurse sparkled in the fifth match of the tri-series against Bangladesh, taking 3/53 albeit in a losing cause. He surged to the top of the wicket-taking charts for the series with a total of seven scalps, which is particularly impressive given that Irish conditions don’t typically offer great support for spinners.

“I’ve been bowling well in patches. I haven’t been as consistent as I’d like to be,” Nurse said during the post-match interaction.

Getting wickets is the ultimate goal for a bowler. I got a four-wicket haul in the first game against Ireland but I didn’t bowl that well. But I’ll take getting wickets any day.

“In the other two games it was a bit tough. This has not been a spinning deck. Wickets here are generally not good for spinners … I have been doing my role in the team and it’s nice to come in and do what the team requires of me.”

The nurse was the only incisive bowler for West Indies in the match as the rest struggled to contain Bangladesh’s slow but steady march towards another win. In the 21st over, Nurse dismissed Shakib Al Hasan and Soumya Sarkar in a space of three balls to push back Bangladesh but an 83-run stand between Mushfiqur Rahim and Mohammad Mithun ensured they got safely over the line without too many hiccups.

“Captain gave me the ball a bit early in the power play so it was all about restricting runs and building some pressure. It worked out for us. I got a couple of wickets in one over but to get 10 wickets (as a team) was the ultimate goal and we didn’t get them.” “I was in a very good rhythm. It was a slow pitch. Today I got most of it right. It was a good performance for me. But to get a win was more important. Obviously, we didn’t get that. But hopefully, we can come back in the final.”

The 30-year-old admitted that West Indies didn’t have adequate runs on the board and it will be essential in the final to get a par score so that bowlers will not be under too much pressure to deliver.

“I thought it was a 300 pitch and if we got to 280 also, we would have been fine. The wicket was as good as the game against Ireland,” said Nurse.

“They have got the better of us in the last two games but that doesn’t mean anything [in the final]. We turn up and get some more runs on the board first and foremost then the bowlers will have an easier job. We need to build some pressure in the field [as well]. And we need to get into their middle-order. We haven’t done that.”

West Indies will play Bangladesh again in the final of the tri-nation series on Friday, 17 May in Dublin.

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Shakib wants to bat at No.3 in ahead of World Cup 2019

Shakib Al Hasan has expressed a desire to bat at No.3 in ODIs, ahead of the ICC CWC19. Cricket fans are waiting for thrilling performances of their favorite players in this year’s tournament. Now you can book Cricket World Cup Final tickets Online.

Shakib wants to bat at No.3 in CWC19
Shakib wants to bat at No.3 in ahead of World Cup 2019

The 32-year-old has played at one down in 13 ODIs, scoring 492 runs at 41.00, which is advanced than his career average of 35.45. Shakib cited the increased number of chances that batting up the order would present, to make an influence with the bat.

“There was a time when I had to come on to the crease before the first 10 overs even if I batted at No.5. But now things have altered, I do not get a chance to bat before 35-40 overs if I bat at the No.5 place,” he said.

“For me, I think, the previous the better. So, personally speaking, I want to play at No.3. I have also spoken my wish to the coach and the skipper. But I don’t have any problem to play anywhere for the team.”

Shakib freshly experienced a renovation in his training routine to get in shape for a big summer. The all-rounder, who is now noticeably fitter and leaner than he was a couple of years ago, said that finding the incentive to work on his suitability was key to this reversal.

“Sometimes in your life, you need a kick. I have got the kick,” he said. “I won’t say how. That’s a secret. It has come in a way that has awakened me. I was fit up to 2011. After that, I didn’t get much chance to work on my fitness and I didn’t feel any push too. But I have got the kick now.”

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Gayle named Caribbean Vice-Captain for CWC19

Caribbean opener Chris Gayle has been named his team’s vice-captain for the CWC19, Caribbean declared on Monday, 6 May.  Cricket fans are waiting for thrilling performances of their favorite players in this year’s tournament. Now you can book Cricket World Cup Final tickets Online.

The 39-year-old has represented West Indies in 103 Tests, 289 one-day internationals and 58 Twenty20 Internationals, scoring 18,992 international runs. Gayle also has prior leadership experience, having captained his side in 90 matches across formats between 2007 and 2010.

Gayle named Caribbean Vice-Captain for CWC19
Gayle named Caribbean Vice-Captain for CWC19

Gayle, who is set to play his last 50-over tournament, will be backing up Jason Holder, and as a senior player, felt that it was his “responsibility to support the captain and everyone else in the team”.

“It is always an honor to represent the West Indies in any format, and this World Cup for me is special,” he said. “As a senior player, it is my responsibility to support the captain and everyone else in the team. This will probably be the biggest World Cup so there will be great expectations, and I know we will do very well for the people of the West Indies.”

Gayle was a part of the 2019 Indian Premier League, in which he played for Kings XI Punjab, who failed to qualify for the knockouts, after finishing sixth on the table. Gayle himself had a terrific run, however, scoring 490 runs in 13 matches, at a brilliant strike rate of 153.60. However, owing to his participation in the league, he missed the ongoing tri-series in Ireland, where West Indies are competing with the hosts and Bangladesh.

In his absence, Cricket West Indies named wicket-keeper batsman Shai Hope as Holder’s deputy for the series, ahead of the side’s second ODI, against Bangladesh. Hope was instrumental in West Indies’ 196-run win in the opening game, against Ireland, where he made a brilliant 152-ball 170, which featured 22 fours and two sixes. He was also involved in a 365-run opening stand with John Campbell – the highest in the format for the first wicket.

“It’s a tremendous honor to be appointed vice-captain for this series here in Ireland,” Hope said. “Ahead of this tournament, I was asked to take on this role and I was happy to accept. Anything I’m asked to do for West Indies cricket, I’m always happy and willing to put my hand up, so this is great.”

West Indies will face Bangladesh in the second ODI of the tri-series in Dublin on 7 May. They will open their World Cup campaign against Pakistan on 31 May in Nottingham.

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Caribbean Check Bench Strength Ahead of World Cup 2019

The Caribbean side missing some of their first-choice players will face hosts Ireland in the first game of the tri-nation series, which also involves Bangladesh, on Sunday, 5 May, and look to familiarize themselves with the English conditions ahead of the CWC. Cricket fans are waiting for thrilling performances in CWC. Now you can book Cricket World Cup tickets to support your favorite players.

Caribbean Check Bench Strength Ahead of World Cup 2019
Caribbean Check Bench Strength Ahead of World Cup 2019

Only half of the 14-man West Indies squad named for the tri-series will be contributing in the CWC19; the other members of the CWC team are playing in the IPL. Yet, the tri-series will offer them a taste of the circumstances, while giving outlying players an opportunity to showcase their talent, especially youngsters like Sunil Ambris, John Campbell, Shane Dowrich and Raymon Reifer.

West Indies did well to draw the five-match ODI series against England in March, an outcome that was not expected as the hosts were facing a strong side placed No.1 on the ICC ODI Team Rankings. They will rely on the experience of a senior player like Darren Bravo and Shai Hope. Skipper Jason Holder will lead the pace attack alongside Sheldon Cottrell, Kemar Roach, and Shanon Gabriel.

Ireland, meanwhile, will be ruing their defeat to England in Dublin on Friday, sliding from a position of strength. While the hosts faltered while batting, their precise bowling had almost derailed England. They have a terrific top three in place, in William Porterfield, Paul Stirling and Andrew Balbirnie, who gave them a good start, and they will be looking to them to put up a competitive score.

Middle-order batsman Lorcan Tucker had a milder debut in comparison to Josh little, who was the star of the bowling line-up. However, Tucker’s domestic credentials are strong enough for him to warrant another chance.

Caribbean Check Bench Strength Ahead of World Cup 2019
Caribbean Check Bench Strength Ahead of World Cup 2019

Key players

Josh Little (Ireland): The teenager, who made his ODI debut on Friday, impressed with a probing spell of 4/45, picking up wickets of James Vince, Eoin Morgan, Dawid Malan, and David Willey. The left-arm mixed short balls with fuller ones deftly and troubled the more experienced England batsmen. While the young man could not finish the job for Ireland, he will be hoping for a repeat performance against the West Indies side.

Darren Bravo (West Indies): The 30-year-old had a sub-par series against England in March this year. While he scored at an average of 44.33, he was not able to capitalize on the good starts and accumulated just 133 runs in five games. This is a great chance for him to get some quality match practice before the marquee tournament.

Conditions

Friday’s game against England was a truncated affair as rain delayed the start of proceedings. The chances of showers on Sunday are low but expect cloud cover throughout the morning. The overcast conditions might aid swing bowling and teams will be looking to field first. The last ODI here was played two years ago in May 2017, in which Bangladesh chased 270 sets by New Zealand with ease.

Teams

Ireland: William Porterfield (c), Andrew Balbirnie, George Dockrell, Josh Little, Andrew McBrine, Barry McCarthy, James McCollum, Tim Murtagh, Kevin O’Brien, Boyd Rankin, Paul Stirling, Stuart Thompson, Lorcan Tucker, Gary Wilson

West Indies: Jason Holder (c), Fabian Allen, Sunil Ambris, Darren Bravo, John Campbell, Jonathan Carter, Roston Chase, Sheldon Cottrell, Shane Dowrich, Shannon Gabriel, Shai Hope, Ashley Nurse, Raymon Reifer, Kemar Roach

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Rahim Said Bangladesh has Strongest Squad for CWC19

Mushfiqur Rahim has spoken up his team’s chances at the ICC CWC19, saying they were good enough to go all the way. Cricket fans are waiting for thrilling performances in CWC. Now you can book tickets for the Cricket World Cup 2019 to support your favorite teams.

Rahim Said Bangladesh has Strongest Squad for CWC19
Rahim Said Bangladesh has the Strongest Squad for CWC19

He will be playing his 4th CWC presence next month and believed the format for this edition, in which all 10 participating teams play each other in the round-robin stage, would be challenging.

Though, given BAN have a few experienced players in their 15-man team; he said the side could do well. “It’s a tough format, but every team will get an equal chance to prove their skill through it,” he told reporters on Sunday, 28 April. “I can say the format is more comfortable for Bangladesh.

“Having most experienced players in the team, this is the strongest CWC team that Bangladesh has ever had. We lost many finals in the recent past. Maybe, a big achievement is waiting for us in the future.”

 

Asked if that meant his side was capable of winning the CWC, he said: “It’s not impossible. It’s tough but possible. I, in my opinion, believe that we have the capability to reach the knockout stages, and anything can happen if we can reach that point.”

Rahim was also confident of showing his best at the biggest stage. “Everyone wants to do well in a big event. I think I’m no exception,” he said. “I have played three CWC and scored runs for my country. It’s going to be my fourth CWC. I’ll try to do something remarkable.

“I’ll be playing in the event to surpass all the previous records of mine. As a batsman, I’ll try to help the team according to my experience.”

Rahim acknowledged it was likely to be Bangladesh captain Mashrafe Mortaza’s last CWC, and said the team was determined to honor him with a “special” performance.

“There are expectations and pressure in every international game as you is representing a nation, and it’s a matter of huge pride and honor,” said Rahim. “This may be our last world cup together if Mashrafe bhai is unable to play the next CWC. We all want to do something unusual, at least for Mashrafe bhai.”

Bangladesh’s CWC training will begin in serious when they leave for Ireland on 1 May to contribute in a tri-nation series, involving the hosts and West Indies. It will be their first series after being blanked 3-0 in New Zealand,

Rahim admitted: “the upcoming Ireland series is very important to regroup as a unit.”

Their CWC campaign begins on 2 June at The Oval against South Africa.

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How the teams stack up in ICC CWC 2019

With the top tournament on the near horizon, it’s time to look at the squads that will be competing for cricket’s top prize this English summer.  Cricket World Cup Final Tickets can be garbed from our global event ticket sales market.

Oldest Squad

How the teams stack up in ICC CWC 2019
How the teams stack up in ICC CWC 2019

While there isn’t much clarity on how the side will line up, Sri Lanka’s contingent of experienced older figures could be vital in ushering them past the group stages. With an average age of 29.9, they are the oldest squad competing for the trophy in this edition.

Seasoned pacers Lasith Malinga, 35, and Suranga Lakmal, 32, look likely to spearhead the bowling attack. Former captain Angelo Mathews, 31, was destined for a return after the side’s poor 50-over form in the absence of the talismanic all-rounder, and there’s a call-up for Jeevan Mendis too. The 36-year-old has not played ODI cricket since 2015, but an extra wise head in the dressing room might be key to revitalizing fortunes for the 1996 winners.

Youngest squad

How the teams stack up in ICC CWC 2019
How the teams stack up in ICC CWC 2019

The youngest squad at this summer’s CWC is that of Pakistan, where the average age is 27.3, followed closely by Afghanistan (27.4). Pakistan look set to unleash promising 19-year-old quicks Shaheen Shah Afridi and Mohammad Hasnain on the world’s biggest stage, while Afghanistan will look to exploit their youthful options with the two-pronged spin attack of 20-year-old Rashid Khan, the No.3-ranked bowler on the ICC ODI Bowling Rankings, and fellow tweaker Mujeeb Ur Rahman, who at 18, is the youngest player at the tournament.

Most capped

How the teams stack up in ICC CWC 2019
How the teams stack up in ICC CWC 2019

Although age might signal ample cricketing experience, it needn’t necessarily have come at the international level. India has the fourth youngest side in the tournament, but also the most capped squad, with a combined total of 1573 appearances, eclipsing the second-most capped team, Bangladesh, by a margin of 274.

Among India’s seniors is MS Dhoni, who has played 341 ODIs, and has still remarkably managed to maintain a batting average of 50.72. Virat Kohli, the captain, and No.1-ranked batsman on the ICC ODI Batting Rankings have 227 appearances to his name, and Rohit Sharma, ranked No.2, has 206 caps, forming a frightening combination.

Bangladesh, meanwhile, will look to draw on their experience as they push for their first CWC title. Mashrafe Mortaza (205 caps), Shakib Al Hasan (195 caps), Mushfiqur Rahim (201 caps), and Tamim Iqbal (189 caps), will know that this is probably their final shot at achieving greatness together.

Mushfiqur recently said that “having most experienced players in the team, this is the strongest World Cup team that Bangladesh has ever had,” and he might just be right.

Most hundreds

India has little to no competition here. With a team tally of 90 and a whopping 41 of those belonging to Kohli, India’s capacity for mammoth innings will certainly be of concern to their opposition. Rohit (22), Shikhar Dhawan (16), and Dhoni (10), also have multiple tons under their belts, but over-reliance on these veterans could be a pitfall.

Although New Zealand, South Africa, and India top England with their tally of centuries, it is the host nation that boasts the most centurions. Seven England players have reached three figures in ODIs, compared to five each for India, South Africa, and New Zealand, which is an indication of their strong batting depth.
Afghanistan and Sri Lanka are both lacking in the century department, with 12 apiece; West Indies’ Chris Gayle alone has more three-figure scorers (25) in ODIs than the two nations combined. That being said, Afghanistan only played their first ODI in 2009.

Most wickets

How the teams stack up in ICC CWC 2019
How the teams stack up in ICC CWC 2019

Taking wickets on hard, high-scoring tracks can be difficult, but English conditions might just give hope to those who are more skilled at getting the ball to nip around, and we have seen many a swing bowler achieve great successes on English shores.

Bangladesh and Sri Lanka’s squads sit atop the leaderboards for ODI wickets, with 829 and 815 respectively, and the onus will fall on the side’s veteran seamers. Mortaza, with 259 scalps in the format, will lead the line for Bangladesh, whilst Malinga, who has the most ODI wickets among all players in the tournament, with 322 scalps, still carries much of Sri Lanka’s bowling weight on his 35-year-old shoulders.
Aaron Finch’s Australia has the least ODI wickets, with 495. Left-arm pacer Mitchell Starc has 145 of those, while fellow fast bowlers Jhye Richardson, Nathan Coulter-Nile and Jason Behrendorff are all relatively inexperienced at the top level. Nathan Lyon is no stranger to the international arena, but exciting young leg-spinner Adam Zampa might be primed to undertake the Aussies’ main spinning role.

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Bangladesh are improving their strength for CWC19 – Neil Mckenzie

The Bangladesh batting coach said that the team has put in a lot of hard work ahead of the ICC Cricket World Cup 2019  and is ready for the competition.

Bangladesh are improving their strength for CWC19 – Neil Mckenzie
Bangladesh are improving their strength for CWC19 – Neil Mckenzie

Mckenzie, who joined Bangladesh’s support staff last year, expressed confidence that the squad would be able to translate its efforts into a noteworthy performance while explaining the importance of enjoying those performances.

“We have, hopefully, ticked all boxes. Now the individuals have to showcase what they can do,” he told ESPNcricinfo. “There’s a lot of hard work that has gone into it. Passion, talent, skill, and knowledge is also not lacking. It is about enjoying the CWC.”

McKenzie also believed that the key for Bangladesh would be in not only batting well but also in batsmen complementing their partners and being aware of each other’s strengths and game plan. McKenzie especially highlighted the importance of strike-rotation, which has never been a traditional strength for the squad. Too often, Bangladesh has thrown away good starts by stagnating in the middle overs and eating up dots.

“I think a lot of the guys are enhancing their strength,” McKenzie said. “We are challenging them to do a few things differently. We have asked a few questions about scoring options and rotation of strike and batting for each other.

“When you are batting on 80, you have to get your partner to 10 from naught. Rotation of strike, drop and run. It is more about being aware of someone else’s game plan, what they are looking to do, and batting in partnerships.”

The challenge for Bangladesh’s batsmen, though, will extend well beyond that. They are used to batting on slow, turning tracks in the subcontinent. Pitches in England, however, are far from slow, and Bangladesh will have to not only get used to the pace on the surface but also carefully choose when they want to attack, especially when it comes to using their feet to come down the ground.

“They really have to wait for the ball as long as they can. Batsmen from the subcontinent come forward to hit on the up. You can’t do that overseas,” he said. “We have identified this, and there’s a lot of footage of different bowlers.”

McKenzie also threw light on Bangladesh’s attributes, such as the ability to pick the gaps and run the ones and twos hard. He acknowledged that they are not prolific six-hitters like the West Indies players are, and urged them to play smartly to their strengths.

“Bangladesh is not going to compete for hitting sixes, with, say, West Indies,” McKenzie said. “We are going to be better than them in skilled hitting. “A guy like Mushi Mushfiqur Rahim can manipulate the pace. We have got so many other attributes. We don’t need to be going at fifth gear, trying to hit the ball out of the ground chasing eight and over. We are good enough to hit gaps and run well.”

Bangladesh’s World Cup campaign will kick off on 2 June against South Africa at The Oval. Before that, they will travel to Ireland to play a tri-series along with West Indies.

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